Rand firms up on lifted risk aversion.

Rand firms up on lifted risk aversion

THE rand oscillated during the European session as traders await to outcome of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting on Wednesday, although general risk aversion started to lift.

Analysts foresees no major change in the FOMC policy statement and expects chairperson Jerome Powell will retain a very dovish tone, even as the FOMC pivots away from its “extremely dovish and patient” stance. While he will probably reiterate that “the standard of substantial further progress (towards their dual mandate) is a ways’ off”, he will also relay that policymakers advanced their discussion on the timing, composition and size of prospective QE tapering.

At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.3 percent firmer, at R14.80/$, after trading in range of R14.77/$ to R14.95/$. The rand traded slightly firmer overnight. The expected range of the rand against the dollar today is R14.70/$ to R15.00/$.

The JSE All Share (-1.04 percent) ended weaker on Tuesday as large tech weighed. In local news, Kumba Iron Ore declared a significant dividend on the back of increased production volumes and sales. Even so, Kumba’s share price closed at R729.2, ending the day 0.10 percent lower. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (-2.15 percent) traded lower.

The Brent oil price traded sideways yesterday, as rising vaccination rates and tight supplies are being weighed against the surging Covid-19 cases globally, which could hamper demand. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 0.04 percent lower, at $74.51pb. Crude prices traded firmer during Asian trade this morning.

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