File image: IOL
File image: IOL

JOHANNESBURG - The rand rallied against the US dollar during Monday’s European trading session amid broad gains in emerging market currencies and stock markets according to NKC Research. 

The South African currency was one of the top-performing EM currencies, spurred by rising optimism over an imminent US-China trade deal and higher precious metal prices. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.8 percent stronger at R13.84/$, after trading in range of R13.84/$ - R13.95/$. The rand traded flat overnight. Expected range today R13.75/$ - R13.95/$. A batch of US data releases will be key for the rand’s direction today.

South African bourse

The JSE All Share (-0.2 percent) ended lower yesterday, dragged by losses in rand hedge and resources shares, but gains in some retail and banking shares mitigated losses. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (+0.9 percent) traded higher. In local news, Sasol (-0.4 percent) announced its headline earnings for the half year to 31 December 2018 rose by 32 percent to R23.25 a share. Asian stock markets were broadly lower this morning as the US-China-negotiations trade lost some momentum.

Brent crude oil

The Brent oil price traded lower yesterday, after US President Donald Trump pleaded in a tweet that Opec should keep prices stable by easing supply cuts. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 1.5 percent lower at $65.91pb. Crude prices traded lower during Asian trade this morning.

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