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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

RUSSIAN MUTINY: South African rand gains against dollar 

RUSSIAN MUTINY: South African rand gains against dollar 

The South African rand gained against the dollar on Monday, as investors watched for potential ripple effects of the aborted weekend mutiny in Russia.

At 1506 GMT, the rand traded at 18.6350 against the dollar , around 0.65% stronger than its previous close after jumping over 1% earlier.

The dollar was last trading 0.04% weaker against a basket of global currencies at 102.710.

The market impact of a short-lived rebellion by Russian mercenaries on Saturday was still unclear, analysts said, with global oil prices slightly higher on concerns about Russian stability and crude supply.

In local news, state utility Eskom said on Sunday that power cuts would be implemented at relatively low levels throughout the week, as fewer breakdowns at power stations had led to more generation capacity.

Many South Africans were facing power cuts of around 10 hours a day until recently, but there have been some signs of improvement in the last few weeks as the country grapples with its worst power crisis on record.

“The rand is likely to remain volatile, influenced by global events more heavily currently, as lower load-shedding (power cuts) stages and President Ramaphosa’s recent efforts to strike a more neutral balance in global geopolitics have been overshadowed,” said Annabel Bishop, Investec’s chief economist, in a research note.

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock is due to visit South Africa on Tuesday and has said she would discuss the “dramatic developments in Russia” with the country.

“I believe it is especially important now for me to meet and hold discussions with our South African partners, so that I can better understand how they view the current global situation,” she said before her departure.

On the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, the blue-chip Top-40 index (.JTOPI) and the broader all-share index (.JALSH) both closed around 0.2% lower.

South Africa’s benchmark 2030 government bond was stronger, with the yield down 7 basis points at 10.605%.


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