Johannesburg - The rand held steady against the dollar on Monday ahead of major economic data releases locally and abroad, with the market keeping a keen eye on South African and US consumer inflation numbers later in the week.

The local unit edged 0.01 percent firmer, to 10.5900 versus the greenback by 08:42 SA time, just shy of the 10.6000 mark.

“The local unit held around a 100-day moving average of R10.56 against the dollar, after advancing about R0.30 since the previous Friday,” said Christie Viljoen of NKC Independent Economists in a market note.

“If the local unit fails to breach technical resistance barriers soon we may see some profit taking.”

Statistics South Africa releases July consumer price index on Wednesday, with a Reuters poll predicting CPI to lower by 0.2 percent year-on-year from the current 6.6 percent.

Inflation remains outside of the central bank's target band of between 3 and 6 percent, making it likely that governor Gill Marcus will again raise interest rates at the bank's next policy meeting.

US inflation figures for July due out on Tuesday are expected to give rand trading some direction, with the Federal Reserve policy outlook providing insight into when the world's largest economy will conclude its massive bond-buying programme.

Yields on benchmark government bonds were mixed.

The yield on the paper due in 2015 lost 0.5 basis points to 6.61 percent, while the yield on the 2026 paper ticked up 1.5 basis points to 8.285 percent. - Reuters