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JOHANNESBURG - The South African currency strengthened as a poor showing on domestic data was counter-weighed by a lift in global risk appetite in tandem with easing US-Sino trade tensions and the ECB pulling the trigger on a comprehensive easing package according NKC Research. 

Emerging market currencies advanced to a six-week peak ahead of the ECB announcement, although the rand was pressured in early European trade by ongoing concerns on the health of the local economy in the wake of a poor business sentiment showing. The focus is now turning to the US FOMC announcement next week, with our expectation for the first of three additional rate cuts this year of 25 bps each. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.55 percent stronger at R14.59/$, after trading in range of R14.56/$ - R14.70/$. The rand was steady overnight. Expected range today R14.50/$ - R14.75/$.

South African bourse

The JSE All Share (+0.96 percent) traded broadly higher yesterday, led by gains in large platinum mining (+5.7 percent) and bank (+2.47 percent) shares. In local news, the South African market regulator fined Steinhoff (+3.77 percent) $3.6m for providing the market “false, misleading or deceptive statements.” In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (+0.52 percent) traded higher.

Brent crude oil

The Brent oil price traded lower yesterday, after a meeting of the OPEC+ alliance failed to provide an outcome over future supply cuts. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 2.5 percent lower at $59.65pb. Crude prices traded firmer during Asian trade this morning.

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