South African Rand Rises in Restricted Trade, Stocks Rise
JOHANNESBURG, April 26 (Reuters) – The South African rand rose slightly on Monday morning in limited trade ahead of a national holiday, with traders likely not taking big bets until key data is expected later in the week.
At 3:15 p.m. GMT, the rand was 0.17% firmer at 14.2625 per dollar, not far from its close at 14.2875 on Friday in New York.
The rand made strong gains in April, outperforming its emerging market counterparts, with year-to-date gains of around 3% against the US dollar as rising commodity prices dampened demand for the currency facing rising US Treasury yields.
The release of producer price inflation data on Wednesday launches a series of month-end announcements, including the national budget and trade figures, which could give direction to the currency in addition to the meeting of the US Federal Reserve this week.
“If the trade balance shows signs of deteriorating faster than expected with local demand picking up, the market may reassess its outlook for the ZAR for the rest of the year,” ETM Analytics economists said.
The dollar appreciated that day, with investors consolidating their positions ahead of the Fed meeting, and while no major policy changes are expected, investors will pay close attention to President Jerome Powell’s comments. Read more
Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) shares have risen with optimism about the prospect of a global economic recovery after the pandemic.
That mood was bolstered by the South African Department of Health’s announcement on Monday that a research study into the COVID-19 vaccine from Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N) has been resumed which has been on hold for very long. rare cases of blood clots. Read more
The benchmark all-stock index (.JALSH) rose 0.41% to end at 67,573 points and the Top 40 Biggest Companies Index (.JTOPI) closed up 0.39% at 61,717 points.
Aspen Pharmacare (APNJ.J), which will manufacture J&J vaccines in the country, rose more than 10%. The drugstore chain Clicks Group (CLSJ.J), which will be part of the companies distributing the vaccine and vaccinating the population, ended up reaching nearly 6%.
Bonds strengthened, with the benchmark 2030 bond yield losing 6 basis points to 9.155%.
Reporting by Mfuneko Toyana. Editing by Jane Merriman
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