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JOHANNESBURG - The rand oscillated between gains and losses against the US dollar during the European session according to NKC Research. 

Cautious optimism regarding trade talks between the US and China lifted risk sentiment during early trade, providing reprieve to the embattled rand. Renewed geopolitical tensions dampened emerging market sentiment during the previous week, which drove investors towards safe-haven currencies. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.3 percent weaker at R14.21/$, after trading in range of R14.15/$ - R14.29/$. The rand traded stable overnight. Expected range today R14.00/$ - R14.40/$.

South African bourse

The JSE All Share (+0.02 percent) manged to land in positive territory yesterday, largely thanks to a strong performance in large technology (+3.3 percent) shares. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (+0.2 percent) traded higher. In local news, Bidvest (+0.1 percent) reported that its headline earnings per share (Heps) rose by 9.6 percent during the six months ended 31 December 2018. Half-year earnings rose on the back of sturdy performance in services, freight and office & print divisions, despite sluggish economic activity and political uncertainty.

Brent crude oil

The Brent oil price rallied yesterday, buoyed by hopes that China and the US will be able to reach an agreement over trade this time around. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 1.3 percent higher at $66.13pb. Crude prices weakened during Asian trade.

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