File image: IOL
File image: IOL

WATCH: Rand pressured by weak production figures

By Compiled by Dhivana Rajgopaul Time of article published Jan 13, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG - The South African currency was pressured by weak production figures although a recovery in sentiment amid easing geopolitical tensions provided some support during the European session according to NKC Research.

The local unit buckled under weak manufacturing data and a resumption of load-shedding this week, worsened by a pessimistic World Bank growth forecast for 2020. Friday’s economic calendar was focused on the release of key US jobs data. Non-farm payrolls advanced by a healthy 145000 in December, slightly below expectations. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.29 percent weaker at R14.25/$, after trading in range of R14.16/$ - R14.25/$. The rand traded steady during early Asian trade. Expected range today R14.20/$ - R14.45/$.

South African bourse

The JSE All Share (+0.62 percent) ended higher on Friday, led mostly by gains in large telecommunication stocks. Telkom (+9.6 percent) found positive ground following a six-month slide which has wiped out nearly 70 percent of the company’s market value. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (+0.38 percent) traded higher.

Brent crude oil

The Brent oil price traded softer during Friday’s session –posting its worst week since July 2019 – as Mideast tensions subsided. Meanwhile, US crude stockpiles rose unexpectedly to 431.1 million barrels in the first week of January, recent Energy Information Administration data showed. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 0.26 percent lower at $65.14pb. Crude prices traded flat during Asian trade this morning. 

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