Johannesburg - The rand was largely steady against the
dollar on Thursday, with sentiment largely positive after a leadership
conference of the ruling ANC allayed investor fears of any radical policy
The currency was at R8.5060 to the greenback by 08:05 GMT,
little changed from Wednesday's close at R8.4850.
"We're not expecting anything major today, we're firmly
entrenched in holiday markets, and more broadly the scene is more positive for
risk," said Absa Capital trader Duncan Howes.
"The major risk event for the local currency, being the
Mangaung conference, is pretty much out of the way and I don't think there's
going to be too much movement."
Investors had been nervous that the ANC's conference in
Mangaung this week could herald a shift towards more populist policies like
state intervention and takeover of mines in the world's largest platinum producer.
But fears of outright nationalisation have abated, and
investors took comfort in the election by the ANC of respected businessman
Cyril Ramaphosa as its deputy president. He will serve with President Jacob Zuma, who was
re-elected ANC chief.
For the rest of the week, the rand should meet resistance
around the R8.30 area while finding support at R8.55/60, traders said.
Government bonds were also largely stable in early trade,
with the yields for the 14-year benchmark and the three-year paper each edging
up half a basis point to 7.26% and 5.35% respectively.
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