Cape Town - The rand weakened against the dollar for a third day after demand for credit in South Africa slowed more than predicted, adding to evidence that growth in Africa’s biggest economy is losing momentum.
Private-sector credit growth slowed to 7.6 percent in September, from a revised 8.1 percent the previous month, the Pretoria-based Reserve Bank said on its website today.
The median estimate of 15 economists in a Bloomberg survey was 7.7 percent.
The central bank has left its benchmark repurchase rate unchanged since July last year to support the economy expanding at it slowest pace since the 2009 recession even as inflation breached its upper target range.
“A softer-than-expected outcome is interest-rate positive and thus currency-negative,” Bruce Donald, a currency strategist at Standard Bank Group Ltd. in Johannesburg, said in an e-mailed note to clients.
The rand depreciated 0.3 percent to 9.86553 per dollar as of 10:38 a.m.in Johannesburg.
Yields on bonds due December 2026 dropped four basis points, or 0.04 percentage point, to 7.90 percent. - Bloomberg News