South Africa's rand hovers near seven-week lows


South Africa’s rand traded close to the previous day’s seven-week low against the dollar on Thursday, hurt by investor concerns over the future of Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

Gordhan was head of the tax service when it set up a surveillance unit which police say was used to spy on politicians. 

* Rand touches early session low of 14,7385/dollar, but claws back to 14.6850 by 0704 GMT, up slightly from Wednesday’s close at 14.7200.


* Government bonds largely flat after recent heavy losses, yield on 2026 benchmark eases half a basis point to 9.04 percent.

* Market eyes moves by major lenders after asset manager Futuregrowth stops lending to some state-owned local companies, citing concerns about “a power struggle going on between factions in government.” 

* Blue chip and all-share stock indices barely changed from Wednesday’s close soon after market opens at 0700 GMT.


(Reporting by Stella Mapenzauswa; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky)