Johannesburg – The rand was weaker in late trade on Thursday as investors react to President Jacob Zuma authorising the deployment of troops to help authorities police the Marikana area.
“The reason why the rand weakened this afternoon was due to rumours that the army was being deployed at certain mines in Rustenburg. This is spooking investors as they are asking whether this is becoming a police state‚ which is rather harsh‚” said Mark Kalkwarf‚ a senior portfolio manager from the Iquad Group.
At 15:32 local time‚ the rand was bid at R8.3695 to the dollar from R8.2671 at Wednesday’s close. It was bid at R10.8162 to the euro from its previous close of R10.7804 and at R13.5272 against sterling from R13.4090 before.
The euro was bid at $1.2927 from $1.3048 at Wednesday’s close.
“The other reason why the rand has weakened is due to the euro’s weakness against the US dollar. Investors are worried about Spain and data from China continues to disappoint the global market‚” Kalkwarf said.