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Rand climbs to nine-week high vs dollar

The rand traded at 17.3100 per dollar at 0615 GMT, up nearly 0.4% from its previous close and its strongest since 27 March.

Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The South African rand firmed to its strongest in nearly nine weeks on Thursday, with market sentiment boosted by optimism over recovering global growth as economies reopen after coronavirus lockdowns.

The rand traded at 17.3100 per dollar at 0615 GMT, up nearly 0.4% from its previous close and its strongest since 27 March.

The optimism over a global economic recovery trumped immediate concerns about a stand-off between the United States and China over Hong Kong.

“Tension between the US and China is growing,” Bianca Botes, executive director at Peregrine Treasury Solutions, said in a client note. “In spite of this, the rand is holding rather firm ... while seeking momentum to break another leg stronger in the short term.”

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa on Sunday announced a further easing of the country’s lockdown from 1 June, allowing the vast majority of the economy to return to full capacity.

The government is due to provide further details on Thursday.

In fixed income, the yield on the instrument due in 2030 was down a single basis point at 8.975% in early trade.