Cape Town - The rand gained for the first time in four days as metal prices rose before the Federal Reserve’s decision on stimulus that drove demand for emerging-market assets.
South African bond yields fell a second day.
The Fed’s Open Market Committee will probably maintain its $85 billion in monthly bond purchases at a meeting that ends today, according to a Bloomberg survey of economists.
South Africa’s trade deficit probably shrank in September from a seven-month high the previous month, a report may show tomorrow.
“The market’s main focus today will be on the FOMC meeting,” Standard Bank Group Ltd. analysts, including Bruce Donald, wrote in an e-mailed note.
An unchanged pace of asset purchases would be “rand-friendly,” they said.
South Africa’s currency appreciated 0.3 percent to 9.8582 per dollar as of 12:31 p.m. in Johannesburg.
Yields on benchmark 10.5 percent bonds due December 2026 dropped two basis points, or 0.02 percentage point, to 7.91 percent.
The Standard & Poor’s GSCI Index of raw materials advanced as copper climbed.
Tin, nickel and platinum also gained.
Metals and other commodities accounted for 60 percent of South Africa’s exports in the first eight months of the year, according to government data.
The nation’s trade shortfall narrowed to 16.4 billion rand ($1.7 billion) in September from 19.1 billion rand the month before, according to the median estimate of 12 economists in a Bloomberg survey. - Bloomberg News