Rand firms as focus turns to fiscal measures, stocks dip

In fixed income, the yield on the 2030 instrument was down 0.5 basis points at 10.300%.
Image: Shutterstock

The rand firmed in afternoon trade on Monday as the government discussed new measures to contain the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, while stocks dipped.

At 1510 GMT, the rand traded at R18.74 versus the US dollar, 0.23% firmer than its previous close.

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s cabinet was due to meet to discuss new measures to contain the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak, including whether to close ailing state airline South African Airways, which has been a major drain on resources.

Ramaphosa said in a weekly newsletter to the nation that the government would increase welfare provision to help poor households suffering because of a lockdown aimed at containing the country’s coronavirus outbreak.

South Africa‘s public finances were in bad shape before it detected its first case of the new coronavirus in March, constraining its ability to provide stimulus.

Lukman Otunuga, senior research analyst at FXTM, said in a note that if a potential stimulus package of R1 trillion ($53.25 billion) – as reported by local media – became a reality, there could be some light at the end of the tunnel.

The Johannesburg Stock Exchange’s Top 40 index dipped 0.55% to close at 44,797 points, while the All-Share index weakened 0.58% to 48,850 points.

Banking shares fell 2.19%, with Absa down 2.15% at R81.51, and FirstRand falling 1.96% to R36.93.

Further losses were curbed by the bullion sector, which rose 2.12%, with Harmony Gold up 2.12% to R54.94 after it said it would it would resume operations up to 50% of their capacity after the government relaxed regulations on miners during the coronavirus lockdown.

In fixed income, the yield on the 2030 instrument was down 0.5 basis points at 10.300%.

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Oil down to $4. Amazing !!

$1, but luckily the ZAR is not an oil-sensitive currency. The ZAR’s destruction will come from the ANC Government.

Its already started – Landbank defaulted on one of their coupons. This brings into play all its other debt instruments which can now be called up.
Likewise the government guaranteed these bonds so their is also debt that can be called up
Disaster on disaster – all the making of this idiot government.
they did not cause the virus but they will be the cause of the anarchy that might follow due to not doing enough to help millions of people who are going hungry. the bit the try to do are also being thwarted by their own councilors stealing the food parcels

Pity so much money was wasted by government – oil is on sale and very cheaply too

End of comments.

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