Johannesburg – The rand is flat on Thursday afternoon as traders wait for US unemployment data for direction.
“The rand is range bound at the moment as everybody will be looking at the US unemployment data out later today. The rand has been affected by SA’s trade deficit‚ which widened more than expected. This and the recent rise in electricity prices puts pressure on the rand and it makes a rate cut this month highly unlikely‚” said Mark Kalkwarf‚ a senior portfolio manager from the Iquad Group.
At 15:41‚ the rand was bid at R8.6617/$ from Wednesday’s close of R8.6684. It was bid at R11.2313/€ from its previous close of R11.2416 and at R13.9857 against sterling from R13.9857 before.
The euro was bid at $1.2968 from Wednesday’s close of $1.2964.
“On the euro front‚ European banks are tightening EU loan standards even though their own funding constraints have eased. This is rand negative as it is not good for growth‚” Kalkwarf said.