Hope of Greek resolution lifts rand

Government bonds weakened.

South Africa’s rand firmed against the dollar on Friday, cheered by the return of risk appetite as markets welcomed hopes of a solution to Greece’s debt crisis.

At 1500 GMT the rand gained 0.58% to 12.4400 per dollar, pulling back slightly having touched a four-session high of 12.3718.

Following steep losses earlier in the week the rand, along with its emerging market peers, rallied higher after Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras backed a tough reforms package that could the pull the country back from financial meltdown.

Greece’s parliament votes on the new proposals over the weekend.

“A positive result from the EZ negotiations this weekend could prove to be a game changer for the week ahead,” said economists at ETM Analytics.

Russia’s rouble, the Turkish lira and Brazil’s real all firmed more than 0.5% versus the greenback, which slipped 0.9 against a basket of major currencies.

Government bonds weakened, with the paper due in 2026 adding 5 basis points to 8.23%.

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