Rand recovers in cautious trade
IOL Business/ - Jul 8th 2016, 09:56
Johannesburg - South Africa’s rand traded firmer on Friday, taking advantage of a slip by the dollar ahead of a jobs report in the United States that could confirm bets of delayed rate hikes by its central bank.
By 06h45 GMT, the rand had gained 0.47 percent to 14.7100 per dollar from an overnight close of 14.7800 in new York, although traders expect local growth concerns to limit the currency's gains.
The dollar index was down 0.21 percent in early trade.
The rand had backtracked in the preceding session after the International Monetary Fund slashed South Africa's growth forecast on Thursday to 0.1 percent in 2016, down from the 0.6 percent it estimated in May.
The Fund cautioned that fiscal and monetary policy options to support growth had narrowed, and that political uncertainty would also weigh on economic activity.
“Risks remain to the downside, including linkages with China, volatility in global financial markets, and domestic political environment and policies that harm confidence,” analysts at NKC African Economics said in a note.
The rand has traded in a narrow range for most of the week with sentiment toward emerging markets still on edge as investors exercised caution as they continued to assess the impact of Britain's departure from the European Union.
Bonds were weaker, with the yield on the benchmark government paper due in 2026 adding 2.5 basis points to 8.795 percent.
On the bourse, stocks were set to open lower when trade resumed at 07h00 GMT, with the JSE securities exchange's Top-40 futures index down 0.53 percent.© Independent On-line 2013
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