Rand steady, market looks to budget for steer

The rand was slightly firmer against the dollar on Friday.

FILE: South African money. Picture: Gadeeja Abbas/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The rand was slightly firmer against the dollar on Friday, with traders and analysts expecting it to track global markets ahead of next week's domestic fourth quarter GDP data and budget review.

At 1542 GMT, the rand traded at 11.6535 versus the greenback, edging up 0.17 percent from Thursday's New York close at 11.6735.

It also had the upper hand over the euro at 13.2098, after ending the previous session at 13.2681.

The rand was likely to consolidate at current levels as investors eyed negotiations on a debt bailout for Greece, ETM market analyst Ricardo Da Camara said.

"The local budget is a big one next week, and then we have fourth quarter GDP. Rating agencies are focussing on the budget to see whether there is some form of tightening of purse strings; any surprises there could lead to rand weakness," he said.

South Africa's nagging twin deficits on its budget and current account helped push the rand down nearly 10 percent against the dollar in 2014.

In fixed income on Friday, yields edged higher across the curve, with the benchmark instrument maturing in 2026 adding 4.5 basis points to 7.655 percent.