Rand slips ahead of Fed chair’s speech

In early trade the rand was at R18.36 to the dollar.

Image: Waldo Swiegers / Bloomberg

The rand weakened in early trade on Wednesday as traders awaited a speech from the US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell for clues on the Fed’s future interest rate path.

At 0722 GMT, the rand traded at R18.36 against the dollar.

The dollar last traded about 0.17% stronger against a basket of currencies, helped by comments from a slew of Fed speakers on Tuesday who indicated that the central bank might not be done with rate hikes.



No major economic data is due on Wednesday in South Africa and the rand is set to take direction from global drivers such as US monetary policy.

Investors will turn their focus towards Powell for new direction, who is set to speak later in the day and on Thursday.

Shares on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange were little changed in early trade, with the blue-chip Top 40 index last trading near its previous close.

South Africa’s benchmark 2030 government bond was stronger in early deals, the yield down 1.5 basis points to 10.385%.

Roy Walsh

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