South Africa saw a dip in foreign direct investment in 2019 compared to the previous year. File image: IOL
South Africa saw a dip in foreign direct investment in 2019 compared to the previous year. File image: IOL

WATCH: Rand softens slightly in volatile session

By Compiled by Dhivana Rajgopaul Time of article published Mar 27, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG - The rand endured another tumultuous session yesterday as South Africans prepared to go into lockdown, although a softening greenback provided some reprieve according to NKC Research. 

South Africans are bunkering down for a 21 day lockdown period. In addition to the suspension of all non-essential production, the ramifications of the lockdown extend to the whole region as the closure of South African ports will affect landlocked neighbours, including disruption of global copper supply channels (via South African ports from Zambian producers). The critical Moody’s review is due today (after close of business), with our baseline expectation for a downgrade to junk status, although the global pandemic may tip the rating agency’s hand to delay a rating action. The South African economy had already entered 2020 on a very fragile footing before the dramatic external developments related to the Covid-19 pandemic emerged. These factors will push the country into a deep economic contraction this year. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.10 percent weaker at R17.39/$, after trading in range of R17.27/$ - R17.59/$. Expected range today R17.10/$ - R17.55/$.

South African bourse

The JSE All Share (+9.47 percent) continued to claw back previous losses yesterday, led by gains across the board. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (+1.76 percent) traded higher.

Brent crude oil

The Brent oil price dipped in early European trade yesterday but crude clawed back losses at the start of New York trading as US stocks opened higher. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 0.92 percent higher at $27.52pb. Crude prices traded softer during Asian trade. 

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