REUTERS: SIPHIWE SIBEKO
REUTERS: SIPHIWE SIBEKO

The rand was firmer on Tuesday morning, earlier reaching its best level in a month as positive sentiment regarding the US-China trade war lifted emerging-market currencies.

Chinese vice-foreign minister Le Yucheng said on Tuesday that the two economic superpowers had made some progress in their trade negotiations. That followed comments by White House adviser Larry Kudlow that the scheduled December tariff on Chinese imports could be withdrawn if trade talks go well.

The rand earlier firmed to R14.69/$ in intraday trade, a level it has not reached in over a month.

At 10am, it had strengthened 0.22% to R14.7263/$ after closing at R14.75/$ on Monday. It had firmed 0.26% to R16.4115/€ and 0.37% to R19.0587/£. The euro was flat at $1.1144. 

“Eskom and uncertainty surrounding the medium-term budget policy statement next week are outweighing some of the positive global news, capping any further retracement for the rand,” treasury partner at Peregrine Treasury Solutions Bianca Botes said.

Gold was up 0.21% to $1,487.46/oz while platinum was flat at $887.46/oz. Brent crude was down 0.2% to $58.92 a barrel.

The Reserve Bank's leading business indicator fell to 103.8 points in August from 103.9 in the previous month, data showed on Tuesday. The median forecast was for the indicator to have fallen to 103.7, according to Bloomberg.

mjoo@businesslive.co.za