Graphic: renjith krishnan

Johannesburg - South Africa's rand softened against the dollar on Thursday, with scope for further losses after hawkish comments from the US Federal Reserve boosted the greenback across the board.

The rand initially weakened to 8.9289 against the dollar and was at 8.92 by 08:39 SA time compared with Wednesday's close at 8.9135.

Government bonds also eased, with yields, which move inversely to the price, slightly higher on the day.

The 2026 market benchmark added four basis points to 7.245 percent while the yield for the shorter-dated paper due in 2015 was up 2.5 basis points at 5.325 percent.

The rand's relative strength against other currency pairs overnight suggested the South African currency was falling victim to broad-based dollar strength rather than domestic factors, said Absa Capital.

“It appears as if the rand remains well entrenched within an 8.80-8.95/dollar range in the very near term and an 8.70/9.20 range over the medium term,” the bank said in a note. - Reuters