The rand was firmer on Tuesday morning, in its third consecutive session of gains amid global risk-on, while local consumer confidence dropped to its lowest in almost two years.
The consumer confidence index, compiled by FNB and the Bureau for Economic Research at Stellenbosch University dropped to -7 points in the third quarter from five points in the second quarter of 2019, data from FNB showed on Tuesday.
This is below the median forecast of three points, according to Bloomberg.
News reports suggesting that the US may withdraw some of the tariffs imposed on Chinese imports lifted global market sentiment on Tuesday.
“Such a charming move from the US would help breaking the ice between the two parties and pave the way towards a partial deal in the coming weeks. Or this is at least what investors are betting for,” London Capital Group senior market analyst Ipek Ozkardeskaya said.
At 10.05am, the rand had firmed 0.57% to R14.7267/$ after closing at R14.81/$ on Monday. It had strengthened 0.5% to R16.4025/€ and 0.42% to R19.0018/£. The euro was flat at $1.1139.
Gold lost 0.16% to $1,507.01/$ and platinum was down 0.21% to $934.45/oz. Brent crude was up 0.31% to $62.3 a barrel.