October 26, 2017 / 1:23 PM / a year ago

CORRECTED-Financial markets shocked by budget - S.Africa treasury spokesman

(Corrects to clarify spokesman was talking about financial market reaction, not the rating agencies)

CAPE TOWN, Oct 26 (Reuters) - Financial markets were in “shock” at the state of South Africa’s economy following Wednesday’s budget statement by Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba, a spokesman for the Treasury said on Thursday.

The budget flagged weaker growth expectations and rising government debt and sent markets sharply lower.

“The reaction is shock at the state of the economy,” Mayihlome Tshwete told Reuters.

The minister later briefed the big three credit ratings agencies about the country’s finances, Tshwete said: “They asked specific questions about the wage bill, state-owned companies and low growth,” he said.

Reporting by Olivia Kumwenda-Mtambo, writing by Karin Strohecker; Editing by Jon Boyle

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