South Africa avoids credit downgrade but for how long?

South Africa breathed an enormous sigh of relief when the ratings agency Standard and Poor's did not downgrade the country's debt to "non-investment" grade, or so-called "junk status". If it had, some pundits were predicting recession, capital flight and even a breakdown of social cohesion.

But how do these ratings work, and why was this such an important issue?

The BBC's Lerato Mbele went along to the University of Pretoria's Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) in Johannesburg for a masterclass.

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