JOHANNESBURG - The rand drifted stronger as it awaited directional guidance from Moody’s rating action, which was slated for Friday evening according to NKC Research.
The rating agency however, delayed publication without providing a reason for not keeping to the indicative scheduling date, causing the rand to strengthen. Our baseline expectation was for the country’s credit rating to remain unchanged at Baa3 (lowest investment grade level), with the outlook revised from stable to negative. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.8 percent stronger at R14.47/$, after trading in range of R14.43/$ - R14.61/$. The rand traded firmer overnight. Expected range today R14.30/$ - R14.55/$.
South African bourse
The JSE All Share (+0.7 percent) ended higher on Friday thanks to solid performance in large retail (+3.4 percent) shares. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (+1.2 percent) traded higher. In local news, Mr Price (+5.4 percent), Woolworths (+4.6 percent) and the Foschini Group (+3.9 percent) were among the day’s top performers.
Brent crude oil
The Brent oil price traded higher on Friday, crude was set for its biggest quarterly gain since 2009, backed up by Opec-led supply cuts and US sanctions against two oil exporters. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 0.2 percent higher at $68.27pb. Crude prices increased during Asian trade this morning.
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