South African rand firms to third day in a row, stocks flat


South African’s rand firmed for a third consecutive session against the dollar on Tuesday as the greenback slipped while emerging markets lapped up a return of appetite for riskier assets.

At 0715 GMT, the rand traded at 14.6615 versus the dollar, 0.5 percent firmer from Monday’s New York close and near a one-week high.

Government bonds were weaker, with the benchmark instrument due in 2026 adding 1 basis points to 9.145 percent.


The rand continued to test the 14.60 resistance level which it last reached on April 1, shortly after the highest court in the land ruled that President Jacob Zuma had violated the constitution by not honouring an order to pay back state money spent on his home.

“Rand gains mostly just represent, and are certainly ultimately dependent on, the dollar,” said currency strategist John Cairns at Rand Merchant Bank in a note.

The rand strengthened in the previous session, rallying to its firmest in one week as sentiment toward emerging markets improved in the wake of growing expectations that the United States central bank would hold off raising interest rates for longer.

On the stock market, the Top-40 index was flat in early trade.