A five rand coin. Picture: REUTERS
A five rand coin. Picture: REUTERS

The rand was flat against the dollar but weaker against the euro shortly before noon on Friday, with market focus squarely on the prospect of monetary policy tightening by leading global central banks later this year.

The dollar was weaker against the euro, which has gained after European Central Bank (ECB) minutes on Thursday pointed to the bank’s plans to revise its guidance for tapering quantitative easing earlier this year.

The strength of the euro had followed expectations that the ECB could move first when tightening monetary policy, putting additional focus on economic data releases out of the US, said BK Asset Management analyst Kathy Lien.

US inflation data for November to be released at 3.30pm local time is expected to be the primary market-moving event on the day.

Markets were also watching political developments within the ANC, but in the interim trade should be muted as markets take a wait-and-see approach, said TreasuryOne dealer Phillip Pearce.

At 11.30am, the rand was at R12.3877 to the dollar from close of R12.3898, at R15.0261 to the euro from R14.9076 and at R16.8623 to the pound from R16.7781.

The euro was at $1.2128 from $1.2030.