May’s consumer inflation number came in at 5.2% again, the same as in April. Core inflation is not far above the midpoint of the target range at 4.6%. Food inflation has come down nicely, from highs in the double digits to the latest read of just 4.3%.

The latest numbers were in line with market expectations. They are looking good to support a first interest rate cut, which the market now expects could be in September. And the rand’s recent strong rally could provide the necessary comfort for that, if it is sustained. The currencies of many of our emerging-market peers have been taking pain at the prospect that the US Federal Reserve will keep rates higher for longer, a prospect that has driven the dollar surprisingly stronger...

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