Rand up slightly despite Fitch’s warning, Newsline

Compiled by Dhivana Rajgopaul

JOHANNESBURG – During European trade the South African rand recovered some mini-budget-related losses – as unconvincing fiscal roadmap undermined confidence – incurred during yesterday’s overnight session according to NKC Research.

Fitch Ratings warned on Thursday that the plan to freeze public sector wages, as laid out in the budget policy statement on Wednesday, will face strong pushback from labour unions, while “tensions within the governing ANC will also hamper policy-making and exceptionally high inequality raises social pressure for additional spending.”

At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.04 percent stronger at R16.34/$, after trading in range of R16.27/$ – R16.48/$. The rand was steady overnight. Expected range today R16.20/$ – R16.50/$.

South African bourse

The JSE All Share (-0.79 percent) ended lower yesterday, dragged by losses in large financial (-2.69 percent) stocks. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (0.06 percent) traded lower.

Brent crude oil

The Brent oil price dropped to its weakest level in five months as new lockdown measures imposed across the West painted a bleak outlook for the energy sector. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 3.24 percent lower at $37.90pb. Crude prices tried to recover during Asian trade this morning.

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