Johannesburg – With local markets set to close at midday on Monday ahead of the Christmas Day and the Day of Goodwill holidays and little in the way of local or international news to offer any direction‚ the rand is expected to remain little changed on Monday.
At 8:30‚ the rand was bid at R8.5659/$ from its previous close of R8.5700. The local currency was bid at R11.2911/€ from its previous close of R11.3204 and at R13.8434 against sterling from R13.7965 before.
The euro was bid at $1.3183 from its overnight close of $1.3179.
Dow Jones Newswires reports that the dollar is slightly stronger against the yen after Japan's incoming prime minister‚ Shinzo Abe‚ over the weekend expressed his desire to the nation's central bank to see further weakening in the yen to support the nation's exporters.
Mike Jones‚ a Wellington-based FX strategist with BNZ said‚ however‚ that Mr. Abe was "singing a familiar tune‚" and that "the market is already reasonably well aware of Abe's yen views and certainly his desire to see further depreciation in the yen."
The euro meanwhile is drifting lower against the dollar.
"There is no news out. The only thing that will make a difference is something on the fiscal cliff‚" Daniel Brdanovic‚ HSBC's chief manager for New Zealand‚ said.
IG's Mr. Shamu said some were pinning the euro's slight weakening on Italian caretaker prime minister Mario Monti's "decision to not run for government at the upcoming February elections. However‚ if there is an opportunity for him to run for a party that aligns itself with his policies‚ then he will be available."
Follow Fin24 on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and Pinterest.