UJ’s Department of Economics and Econometrics held their annual prize giving function on Friday 31 March 2017. At the function Anmar Pretorius received an award as the first placed PhD student from all students graduating in the department in 2016. In the photograph Anmar is joined by colleagues from UJ: Prof Joel Hinaunye Eita and Dr Kwame Osei-Assibey. The function took place at the Johannesburg Country Club with Dr Melanie van Rooy, Marketing director of Makro SA, as the guest speaker. Her presentation offered very interesting insights into the analysis and use of big data in planning marketing strategies.
PhD candidate Sandra Makumbirofa spent the best part of July in Italy conducting surveys for her research project. Her focus is on Tourism Economics and her thesis forms part of the Green Bubbles project. Here is her report from the Mediterranean:
Sandra in Italy!
In my warm clothes, exhausted from the 10 hour flight from O.R Tambo airport Johannesburg, with two stop overs in Frankfurt then Munich, I finally arrived in Genoa, Italy to make my research debut in Europe. It was hot and humid as summer had just started. The streets were filled with people chattering in a language that sounded so passionate and captivating. Over the weeks I witnessed Italians speak with so much enthusiasm and hand gestures. It was always so fascinating to listen and watch them converse.
Overwhelmed with expectations and wonder, this is my first year PhD and I had the opportunity of doing a study based on fieldwork in Italy and therein, was embarking on my first data collection.
I was sampling Portofino Marine Protected Area (MPA), which involved engaging with dive operators in Rapallo and Santa Margherita. Portofino is a coastal resort town in the northwesterly province of Liguria. It is famous for its magnificent harbor and a favoured destination for the affluent and famous. My research is part of an EU funded project for sustainable diving called Green Bubbles RISE in collaboration with eight other entities from Italy, the Netherlands, Malta, Turkey and the United States. The sample population were scuba divers who were asked to fill out a questionnaire. As most natives do not speak English, the helpful dive operators assisted in ensuring we successfully obtained sufficient questionnaires.
Yesterday two colleagues in the School of Economics received their PhD degrees at the autumn ceremony.
Dr Carike Claassen received her PhD for the thesis, The state of decoupling before and during the Great Recession, under the guidance of Prof Elsabe Loots (UP), Prof Alain Kabundi (SARB) and Prof Wilma Viviers.
Dr Alicia Fourie worked on the topic, A case study of determining the economic literacy of introductory economics students in South Africa, with Prof Waldo Krugell.
We are really proud of their hard work and dedication and wish them the best with their future research plans.
During the autumn break Dr Anmar Pretorius received her PhD degree at the University of Johannesburg. The topic of her thesis was “An empirical analysis of South Africa’s financial market integration with the world”. The formal laudation reads as follows:
Dr Anmar Pretorius
After obtaining her bachelor’s degree at the former University of the Orange Free State (UOFS) in 1991, Ms Pretorius graduated with an honours degree Cum Laude in 1992, an MCom (Economics) Cum Laude in 1993, and a Higher Education Diploma Cum Laude in 1996 from the same university. She received the Dean’s Medal for the best honours student in the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences at the UOFS in 1992.
Ms Pretorius is currently employed as a senior lecturer in the School of Economics at the North-West University (NWU). Prior to joining the NWU, she lectured at the University of the Free State, University of South Africa and Monash South Africa. She is married to Derick Blaauw.
Ms Pretorius’s research focused on South Africa’s financial market integration with the world. The empirical study included the stock, bond and currency markets. The results indicate that variation in the global stock market is much more synchronised than in the other two markets. Rolling regressions confirm that the level of integration in all three markets varies and exhibits an increasing trend over time. Variations in the stock and bond markets are better explained by common factors from emerging markets. In the currency market, however, common factors from developed markets explain a larger share of the variation in the South African market.
The study contributes to our understanding of dynamics of globalisation on the South African financial market, particularly during periods of market turmoil. The originality of the study lies in its focus on the time-varying nature of integration as well as the linking of common factors driving the global financial markets to specific macroeconomic variables. Findings of the thesis have already been presented at two local and two international conferences and submitted for publication in an international peer-reviewed journal.
Congratulations Dr Anmar!