Rand firmer prior to rate decision

The rand firmed against a softer dollar quickly Thursday as expectations the central bank would go away its main lending rate unchanged for a third meeting consecutively boosted investor appetite with the local currency.

The rand was up 0.82% at 14.52 per dollar at 0650 GMT, having closed in Nyc at 14.64.

Markets were awaiting the interest rate decision of your South African Reserve Bank (Sarb), due at 1300 GMT.

All bar one of the economists polled by Reuters the other day understand the Sarb leaving benchmark rates at 6.5%, with the need to keep inflation manageable outweighing weak economic growth as well as rand’s recent plunge.

Lower inflation and comparatively high lending rates, which happen to have sustained demand by yield-hungry investors regardless of the poor growth outlook, might be helped aided by way of rate hold.

In fixed income, the yield over the benchmark government bond due in 2026 was down 3.5 basis points to 9.065%.

Stocks are due open higher at 0700 GMT, with all the JSE securities exchange’s Top 40 Futures Index up 0.34%.?