File image: IOL

JOHANNESBURG - The rand traded on a firmer footing during the European session, although traders await today’s Fed meeting for directional guidance according to NKC Research. 

US policymakers are set to convene this evening, with our expectation for a maintenance of the current stance. We expect one rate cut this year of 25 bps, preponed from March 2020 to December 2019. In turn, we expect that local monetary authorities will cut the repo rate next semester by 25 bps, although the probability of a 50-bps cut has increased. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 2.0 percent stronger at R14.51/$, after trading in range of R14.50/$ - R14.82/$. The rand traded flat overnight. Expected range today R14.40/$ - R14.65/$.

South African bourse

The JSE All Share (+0.8 percent) ended higher yesterday, after the local market was closed in observance of Youth Day on Monday. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (+1.3 percent) traded higher. In local news, Old Mutual (-0.3 percent) shares traded on the back foot after the country’s second-biggest insurer said it had fired suspended Chief Executive Peter Moyo, due to conflict of interest.

Brent crude oil

The Brent oil price traded sharply higher yesterday, boosted by positive comments from the US president and expectations of potential supply disruptions in the Middle East. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 3.1 percent higher at $62.76pb. Crude prices traded firmer during Asian trade this morning.

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