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JOHANNESBURG – The South African rand traded in a very narrow range ahead of this week’s policy decision according to NKC Research.
The domestic economic calendar is focused on the Sarb’s MPC meeting (21 – 23 May) this week, at which time we expect the repo rate to be left unchanged at 6.75 percent. Meanwhile, on US soil, traders await policymakers’ statements, along with the all-important FOMC minutes, for directional guidance on monetary policy. At the close of local trade, the rand quoted 0.2 percent stronger at R14.38/$, after trading in range of R14.36/$ – R14.49/$. The rand steadied overnight. Expected range today R14.30/$ – R14.50/$.
South African bourse
The JSE All Share (-0.3 percent) ended lower yesterday, following a mixed performance across sectors – retail (-2.7 percent) shares were down, while telecommunications (+2.1 percent) shares edged higher. In the overall emerging market sphere, the MSCI Emerging Market Index (+0.5 percent) traded higher. In local news, Anglo American Platinum (-2.4 percent) shares ended in the red after the miner announced on Monday that it had sacked over 600 underground workers at its Mototolo mine following an illegal strike.
Brent crude oil
The Brent oil price had a mixed session yesterday, supported by escalating US-Iran tensions on the one hand and dragged lower by the ongoing Sino-US trade tensions on the other. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 0.4 percent lower at $71.99pb. Crude prices traded weaker during Asian trade this morning.
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