Johannesburg - South Africa's rand lost ground against the dollar on Friday after stronger than expected US nonfarm payrolls data.

The rand, which reached a two-month high this week, was at 10.7250 to the dollar at 16:52 SA time, down more than 1 percent from Thursday's New York close.

Employers in the United States added 175,000 jobs to their payrolls last month after creating 129,000 new positions in January, the Labor Department said on Friday, keeping the Federal Reserve on track to continue reducing its monetary stimulus.

Despite the first rolling blackouts in South Africa in six years on Thursday, the rand hit a two-month high of 10.5885.

The gains were in line with the euro which rose after the European Central bank kept interest rates on hold.

State-run power utility Eskom, which imposed the blackouts for the first time since 2008, said on Friday that the power supply remained “constrained but stable.”

But a repeat of the power outages is possible.

“We haven't seen that much of a negative reaction to the Eskom load shedding at all,” said ETM market analyst Sean McCalgan. “That could become a larger risk factor going forward.”

The yield on the 2026 government bond climbed 6 basis points to 8.515 percent while that on the 2015 paper was 6.5 basis points higher at 7.01 percent. - Reuters