Rand falls 1% as dollar rebounds on hawkish Fed statement

09 November 2018 - 15:48 By Karl Gernetzky
The previous version of the rand notes, before Nelson Mandela became the firgurehead. File picture
The previous version of the rand notes, before Nelson Mandela became the firgurehead. File picture
Image: Russell Roberts

The rand was weaker against major global currencies on Friday afternoon, having now given back about 35c from its intra-day best of R13.88 earlier in the week.

The US Federal Reserve policy statement on Thursday evening was staunchly hawkish, analysts said, with the bank indicating it would raise interest rates a further 25 basis points in December.

The Fed has raised interest rates three times so far this year, moves which have prompted major sell-offs in emerging-market assets.

The prices of many commodities have slumped, with a falling oil price offering some relief to local consumers.

The price of Brent crude dropped below $70 a barrel for the first time since April. A falling oil price decreases the risk of further interest-rate increases locally.

The rand was faring slightly better against the pound than the euro or dollar on Friday, due to reports of serious Brexit negotiations.

“The potential for a deal to be announced any day brings with it an element of weekend risk for the pound, both to the upside and downside,” said Oanda analyst Craig Erlam.

At 2:30pm, the rand was 1.14% weaker to the dollar at R14.2903, 0.97% to the euro at R16.2122, and 0.78% to the pound at R18.6064. The euro was 0.16% weaker at $1.1345.

The bid on the benchmark R186 government 10-year note was at 9.19% from 9.13%.

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