South African bonds firmed further on Friday afternoon, as the rand briefly strengthened through R13.30/$, for the first time about three weeks.

The stronger rand was a result of a weak dollar to the euro, with the greenback dented by softer-than-expected inflation in the US.

US consumer inflation rose to an annual rate of 2.2% in September, against expectations for an increase of 2.3%.

The low inflationary pressures reinforced concerns expressed earlier in the week by most US Federal Reserve officials regarding its medium-term outlook.

While markets generally expect the Fed to raise interest rates in December, there are increasing doubts about the Fed’s policy path in 2018.

At 3.31pm, the benchmark R186 government bond was bid at 8.635% from 8.68%.

The rand was at R13.3024 from R13.4498.

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