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Seasonal adjustment is a means of removing the estimated effects of normal seasonal variation from the series so that the effects of other influences on the series can be recognised more clearly. Seasonal adjustment does not aim to remove irregular or non-seasonal influences which may be present in any particular month. According to Stats SA, seasonally adjusted estimates are generated each month using the X-12-ARIMA Seasonal Adjustment Program developed by the United States Census Bureau.

Seasonally adjusted manufacturing production increased by a total of 1.9 per cent in the third quarter of 2022 compared with the second quarter of 2022. Seven of the ten manufacturing divisions recorded positive growth rates over this period.

The largest positive contributions were made by motor vehicles, parts and accessories and other transport equipment division which increased by 21.1 per cent. The food and beverages division increased by 4.0 per cent contributing 0.9 of a percentage point. The 3.7 per cent jump came from basic iron and steel, non-ferrous metal products, metal products and machinery division thereby contributing 0.8 of a percentage point.

The largest negative contribution was made by the petroleum, chemical products, rubber and plastic products division which decreased by 9.2 per cent and contributing negative 2.0 percentage points.

Seasonally adjusted mining production increased by 2.2 per cent in the third quarter of 2022 compared with the second quarter of 2022. The largest positive contributors were gold with 9.6 per cent; diamonds with 20.4 per cent; coal 3.2 contributing per cent; and manganese ore with 10.2 per cent and contributing 0.7 of a percentage point according to Stats SA.

Mineral sales at current prices increased by 20.7 per cent year-on-year in September 2022. The largest positive contributors were: coal with 63.1 per cent and contributed 14.1 percentage points; gold contributed 122.4 per cent and contributed 10.0 percentage points; ‘other’ metallic minerals 164.0 per cent and contributed 3.1 percentage points; and manganese ore with 33.0 per cent and contributing 1.7 percentage points.

South Africa produces over 250 million tonnes of coal every year. It is estimated that almost 75 per cent of this coal is used domestically. Nearly 80 per cent of the energy needs of South Africa are taken care of by coal and over 90 per cent of the coal consumed on the entire African continent is produced in South Africa. The biggest coal deposits can be found in the Ecca deposits, a vein of the Karoo Supergroup in South Africa.