Bonds. Picture: THINKSTOCK
Bonds. Picture: THINKSTOCK

Local bonds had moved marginally firmer by midday on Wednesday after slight gains in the rand.

The market was supported by an announcement by Treasury officials that SA would raise $3bn from global capital markets.

But mostly the market adopted a wait-and-see attitude to the effects of US President Donald Trump’s extension of tariff increases, which might spark a global trade war.

Trump intends imposing tariffs of up to $50bn on Chinese exports, targeting the technology and telecommunication sectors. This follows on the earlier announcements of higher tariffs on steel and aluminium imports.

"These tariffs could enhance the possibility of a global trade war which will create a risk-adverse environment for emerging markets," said TreasuryOne currency trader Gerard van der Westhuizen.

The dollar was under some pressure following the announcement that US secretary of state Rex Tillerson would be the latest senior White House official to depart.

Tillerson’s departure comes as the US gears up for potentially crucial talks with North Korea and pursues a more protectionist stance towards global trade.

Earlier, the release of US inflation data proved to be less of a market mover for bonds, as the data came in as expected and reflected a subdued inflationary environment in the US.

At 11.31am the R186 was bid at 8.07% from 8.08% and the R207 at 6.67% from 6.68%.

The rand was at R11.7491 to the dollar from R11.8099.

The US 10-year treasury was last seen at 2.8402% from 2.8438%.