Rand notes. Picture: THINKSTOCK
Rand notes. Picture: THINKSTOCK

The rand was relatively calm in midmorning trade on Wednesday, with traders finding little reason to push it in either direction.

Equity markets were broadly patchy, as were commodity prices, leaving the rand in a relatively narrow range.

The local currency started August on a slightly negative note, after the ANC’s decision to seek to change the constitution to allow the expropriation of land without compensation.

"The market is waiting for some clarity regarding the issue and should the details continue to be murky we could see the rand on the back foot, as uncertainty plus emerging markets don’t gel," TreasuryOne currency dealer Andre Botha said in a e-mailed note to clients.

The economy was taking centre stage at a cabinet lekgotla under way in Pretoria, communications minister Nomvula Mokonyane said. She said on Tuesday that the cabinet would intensify deliberations on how to create an investor-friendly environment in SA.

"There is a determination not to reinvent the wheel but to have a stimulus package that deals with issues such as agricultural support for food security and productivity in the agricultural sector.

At 11.05am, the rand was at R13.3477 to the dollar, from R13.3344, at R15.4720 to the euro from R15.4642, and at R17.2251 to the pound from R17.2586.

The yield on the benchmark R186 was at 8.67% from 8.68%.

With Zingisa Mvumvu