ANGGOLD: 16,922 -212 (-1.24%)
South Africa's rand hits near 6-week best as dollar falls, stocks down
JOHANNESBURG, April 9 (Reuters) - South Africa's rand firmed
on Tuesday, supported by a retreating dollar, which was shackled
by a combination of weak U.S. economic data and gains in
At 1501 GMT the rand was 0.73 percent firmer at
14.0275 per dollar, after touching a near six-week best of
14.0100 earlier in the session.
The dollar slipped against a basket of rival major
currencies, its second day of losses.
BNP Paribas South Africa senior economist Jeff Schultz said
easing concerns about the U.S.-China trade tensions and fewer
concerns over a global economic slowdown had played a part in
current rand gains.
"All of that has prompted a slightly more optimistic, or
risk-on appetite for global investors and that is obviously
helping the emerging market currencies like the rand," Schultz
With interest rates steady and inflation moderate, the
currency offers one of the most attractive spreads to U.S.
dollar and other low yield currencies, making it a target for
Mining and manufacturing production figures on Thursday are
the main data points locally, while investors will also have an
eye on the tariff dispute between Washington and Beijing.
Bonds also firmed, with the yield on the benchmark 10-year
bond down 2 basis points to 8.495 percent.
In stocks, the Johannesburg All-share index slipped
0.25 percent to 57,838 points, while the Top-40 index
fell 0.27 percent to 51,564 points.
Trader Ryan Woods, of Independent Securities, however
pointed out that gold stocks at least were looking "a little
better", with the underlying price up half a percent.
AngloGold Ashanti, for instance, rose by 0.87
percent to 195.28 rand. Other miners however dragged the index
down, with South32 falling 4.19 percent and
AccelorMittal down 3.9 percent.
But Woods said there was little remarkable about the stock
market on Tuesday, with investors largely in wait-and-see mode
ahead of South Africa's national election.
"It's very much a non-event, you almost get the impression
that the market is sitting and waiting, and that's going to be
the case until May 8," said Woods.
(Reporting by Naledi Mashishi and Onke Ngcuka;
Editing by Alison Williams)
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