JOHANNESBURG - The South African currency shrugged off a lacklustre start to the European trading session to reach its strongest level in more than four months, supported by risk appetite and carry appeal according to NKC Research. 

Moreover, Fitch’s decision not to downgrade the country’s credit rating further provided added support. While Brexit cliff-edge risk continued to dampen global sentiment, the rand shrugged off waning sentiment amid carry allure. Across the pond, FX markets dismissed an impending Trump impeachment vote as the greenback rode the tailwinds provided by solid jobs and manufacturing data. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.77 percent stronger at R14.30/$, after trading in range of R14.25/$ - R14.30/$. The rand drifted weaker overnight. Expected range today R14.20/$ - R14.45/$.

South African bourse

The JSE All Share (+0.77 percent) ended higher yesterday, led by gains in large technology (+2.25 percent) and financial (+1.83 percent) stocks. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (+0.60 percent) traded on the front foot as Saudi Aramco’s shares were included in the index.

Brent crude oil

The Brent oil price traded in a narrow band yesterday as traders assessed the latest industry data. The American Petroleum Institute reported that US crude inventories rose by 4.7 million barrels in the week December 13 to 452 million barrels. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 0.18 percent lower at $65.68pb. Crude prices remained upbeat during Asian trade this morning. 


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