Rand breaks through R15/$ as Trump impeachment talks weigh on sentiment
Rand Merchant Bank says investor perceptions of National Treasury’s auction will influence the local currency
The rand was weaker on Wednesday morning, breaking through R15/$ to its lowest intraday level in three weeks as markets were rattled by news of an impeachment inquiry for US President Donald Trump, while investors await the weekly local bond auction.
The US House announced an impeachment investigation into Trump on Tuesday over allegations that he sought help from Ukraine to investigate former US vice-president Joe Biden.
Locally, the focus will shift to the National Treasury’s first weekly bond sale since July later in the day.
“The rand will be influenced by investor perceptions of National Treasury’s eurobond sale and the promising rates at which the 10- and 30-year bonds cleared, representative of investor appetite,” Rand Merchant Bank analyst Nema Ramkhelawan-Bhana said.
“Markets are fickle and the slight optimism over Treasury’s ability to fund the ballooning deficit in a sustainable manner could easily fade, given the perilous global backdrop.”
At 10.02am, the rand weakened 0.83% to R14.9877/$, 0.58% to R16.4794/€ and 0.35% to R18.6403/£. The euro firmed 0.23% to $1.0995.
The benchmark R186 government bond was weaker, with the yield rising five basis points to 8.32%. Bond prices move inversely to bond yields.
Gold was little changed at $1,531.74/oz while platinum was down 0.57% to $950.27. Brent crude lost 0.26% to $62.27 a barrel.