S.African bonds, rand firm as U.S. rate hike looks unlikely - CNBC Africa

S.African bonds, rand firm as U.S. rate hike looks unlikely


by Reuters 0

US Fed Chair Janet Yellen is expected to delay raising interest rates. PHOTO: Flickr

South African government bonds climbed to their strongest in more than two months on Friday and the rand hovered near a three-week high, buoyed by signals that the U.S. Federal Reserve could delay raising interest rates.

South Africa's blue-chip Top-40 futures index was up 0.9 percent, suggesting the actual index, would open 419 points firmer at 0700 GMT.

In fixed income, the yield on the benchmark note maturing in 2026 gave up 10 basis points in early trade, touching a low of 8.12 percent last reached on Aug. 12.

It was last trading at 8.145 percent, down 7.5 basis points on the day.

The rand climbed to a session high of 13.2610/dollar, the strongest it has been since Sept. 18, according to Thomson Reuters data.

By 0643 GMT the local currency was at 13.3100, barely changed from Thursday's close at 13.3030.

The greenback came under pressure after the latest Fed minutes increased doubts that the U.S. central bank will raise interest rates this year.

"The rand has maintained a firmer bias this morning in line with stronger Asian equity markets and firmer commodity prices," Barclays Africa said in a market note.