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Rand rallies to three-week highs ahead of NPA briefing
Rand rallies to three-week highs ahead of NPA briefing

Rand rallies to three-week highs ahead of NPA briefing

ECONOMIC NEWS - Oct 31st 2016, 11:04

The rand strengthened to its best level against the dollar in three weeks on Monday morning as speculation mounted that fraud charges against Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan could be withdrawn. 

Just more than two weeks ago, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) charged Gordhan with two counts of fraud relating to an early retirement of former South African Revenue Service deputy commissioner Ivan Pillay.

The move, which Gordhan has labelled as politically motivated, pushed the rand to R14.50 against the greenback before bouncing back amid a groundswell of support for the minister.

NPA boss Shaun Abrahams is to hold a media briefing later in the morning to pronounce on the representations made by Gordhan’s co-accused Pillay and former SARS commissioner Oupa Magashula.

Meanwhile, the dollar was broadly steady against the major currencies ahead of the US Federal Reserve’s meeting later this week and the closely watched US nonfarm payrolls report.

The Fed is expected to keep rates on hold ahead of the US presidential election that may bring volatility to financial markets.

"The US dollar may be experiencing a minor recovery this morning but the sell-off late on Friday clearly highlights how unsettled traders have become just over a week before they head to the polls," Oanda senior market Analyst Craig Erlam said in a note.

"What was looking to be a relatively comfortable win for Hillary Clinton, a market-friendly outcome at least in the near term, has now just opened right up again."

At 9.12am, the rand was at R13.7498 to the dollar from Friday’s R13.8143 It was at R15.0694 to the euro from R15.1759 and R16.7555to the pound from R16.8334.

The euro was at $1.0960, from 1.0986© Business Live MMXVI 

Read more about: rand | markets | economy

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