Johannesburg - The rand hit its lowest level in more than a week on Tuesday, in line with a fall in other commodity currencies as a nuclear test in North Korea fuelled demand for safe haven assets.
The rand was at R8.9620/$ at 08:43, 0.6% weaker than its close in New York on Monday. It reached a low of R8.9725 earlier in the session, its weakest since February 1.
The Australian and Canadian dollars also fell on Tuesday morning as the US dollar strengthened after North Korea confirmed that it had conducted its third nuclear test.
"The nuclear test in North Korea has been a slight risk-off factor," Standard Bank trader Warrick Butler said. "All the commodity currencies have also weakened a bit."
Butler added that a large outflow on Monday from private equity clients was another factor in the rand's softness.
Government bond yields were barely changed at 7.305% on the 2026 issue and 5.315% on the 2015 paper.
South Africa will sell R2.1bn of the 2036 , 2041 and 2048 bonds at 11:00 on Tuesday.
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