20°C / 22°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 9°C
  • Tue
  • 21°C
  • 10°C
  • Wed
  • 20°C
  • 10°C
  • Thu
  • 19°C
  • 8°C
  • Fri
  • 18°C
  • 6°C
  • Mon
  • 19°C
  • 14°C
  • Tue
  • 15°C
  • 10°C
  • Wed
  • 14°C
  • 9°C
  • Thu
  • 15°C
  • 11°C
  • Fri
  • 18°C
  • 9°C
  • Mon
  • 23°C
  • 10°C
  • Tue
  • 24°C
  • 11°C
  • Wed
  • 23°C
  • 10°C
  • Thu
  • 22°C
  • 8°C
  • Fri
  • 20°C
  • 8°C
  • Mon
  • 22°C
  • 7°C
  • Tue
  • 22°C
  • 6°C
  • Wed
  • 23°C
  • 7°C
  • Thu
  • 22°C
  • 5°C
  • Fri
  • 20°C
  • 3°C
  • Mon
  • 25°C
  • 16°C
  • Tue
  • 23°C
  • 16°C
  • Wed
  • 19°C
  • 15°C
  • Thu
  • 21°C
  • 13°C
  • Fri
  • 20°C
  • 12°C
  • Mon
  • 21°C
  • 14°C
  • Tue
  • 16°C
  • 9°C
  • Wed
  • 14°C
  • 8°C
  • Thu
  • 15°C
  • 10°C
  • Fri
  • 18°C
  • 10°C
  • Mon
  • 17°C
  • 10°C
  • Tue
  • 13°C
  • 5°C
  • Wed
  • 15°C
  • 4°C
  • Thu
  • 15°C
  • 5°C
  • Fri
  • 19°C
  • 6°C
  • Mon
  • 18°C
  • 12°C
  • Tue
  • 14°C
  • 8°C
  • Wed
  • 14°C
  • 6°C
  • Thu
  • 14°C
  • 8°C
  • Fri
  • 18°C
  • 7°C
  • Mon
  • 24°C
  • 9°C
  • Tue
  • 25°C
  • 9°C
  • Wed
  • 25°C
  • 9°C
  • Thu
  • 24°C
  • 7°C
  • Fri
  • 22°C
  • 6°C
  • Mon
  • 23°C
  • 3°C
  • Tue
  • 22°C
  • 5°C
  • Wed
  • 23°C
  • 4°C
  • Thu
  • 15°C
  • 1°C
  • Fri
  • 18°C
  • 0°C
  • Mon
  • 27°C
  • 8°C
  • Tue
  • 32°C
  • 8°C
  • Wed
  • 19°C
  • 9°C
  • Thu
  • 29°C
  • 8°C
  • Fri
  • 20°C
  • 7°C
  • Mon
  • 19°C
  • 13°C
  • Tue
  • 15°C
  • 7°C
  • Wed
  • 12°C
  • 6°C
  • Thu
  • 14°C
  • 9°C
  • Fri
  • 17°C
  • 8°C

Rand dips as dollar lifted by Fed minutes

The readout of last month’s Fed meeting gave few clues about whether a more dovish shift in policy is possible in the coming months, helping to ease recent selling pressure on the dollar.

South African rand. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The rand weakened on Thursday as the US dollar rebounded after less dovish than expected minutes from last month’s US Federal Reserve policy meeting.

At 1500 GMT, the rand traded at R17.3225 versus the dollar, 0.3% weaker on the day.

“The Fed kept its cards close to its chest on Wednesday, not providing any clear direction in terms of policy moving forward,” said Bianca Botes, executive director at Peregrine Treasury Solutions in Pretoria.

“The dollar took advantage of this, clawing back lost ground against other major currencies.”

The readout of last month’s Fed meeting gave few clues about whether a more dovish shift in policy is possible in the coming months, helping to ease recent selling pressure on the dollar.

South African state power utility Eskom implemented a third straight day of planned power cuts on Thursday after breakdowns at its coal-fired power stations.

Local financial markets have largely shrugged off the latest bout of power cuts so far, but they highlight the obstacles to growth in Africa’s most industrialised economy.

Stocks continued to slide as investors took profits in hospitality stocks, while weak results and earnings forecasts coupled with the Fed minutes rattled sentiment.

At the close, the Johannesburg All-Share index fell to a near three-week low, down 1.42% to 55,629 points, while the Top-40 index weakened 1.45% to 51,380 points, a level last hit on 3 August.

Profit takers continued to move on hotel and casino operators Sun International and Tsogo Sun Gaming , which dropped 10.78% to R11.26 and 6.40% to R3.51 respectively.

Hospitality shares, which were mostly up last week and on Monday after President Cyril Ramaphosa removed coronavirus lockdown restrictions over the weekend, started snapping their winning streak on Tuesday.

Budget clothing and furniture retailer Mr Price closed 5.83% weaker after it said its half-year profit would fall by at least 20% due to the impact of the coronavirus.

Meanwhile Standard Bank fell 0.98% after the lender reported a 43% drop in half-year profit due to soaring bad loans.

“People look at those numbers and go ‘things are really tough out there’ and it brings people back to reality that the economy being seriously damaged by this lockdown is not going to disappear overnight just because we’re on level two (lockdown),” Cratos Capital equity trader Greg Davies said.

“Those numbers are slowing the upward momentum that we saw going into the lowering of the level so people are just generally feeling less optimistic.”

South African government bonds firmed, with the yield on the 2030 instrument down 2 basis points to 9.270%.

Download the EWN app to your iOS or Android device.