Johannesburg – The rand was off its
worst levels in the afternoon session‚ with analysts attributing
the day’s recovery in the rand/US dollar to worse-than-anticipated
US housing data‚ which kept hopes alive of more monetary easing
from the US Federal Reserve.
At 16:09 local time the rand was bid at
R8.2238 to the dollar from Wednesday’s close of R8.2140. It was
trading at R10.1321 to the euro from its previous close of R10.0884
and at R12.9275 against sterling from R12.8809 before.
The euro was bid at $1.2329 from
US home building slipped in July after
a strong gain in June while new permits rose to their highest level
in four years‚ Dow Jones Newswires reported.
Housing starts decreased 1.1% last
month from June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 746 000‚
the Commerce Department said on Thursday. Compared with a year ago‚
new construction was up 21.5%. The results were weaker than forecast.