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Markets WRAP: Rand closes at R13.98/$

2019-07-17 08:38

The day's range was between R13.94 and R14.00.

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Last Updated at 13:43
17 Jul 17:19

The rand closed at R13.98 to the greenback on Wednesday afternoon.

The day's range was between R13.94 and R14.00.


17 Jul 16:59

Vodacom's Yolanda Cuba appointed as MTN head of Digital and Fintech

Yolanda Cuba has been appointed Group Chief Digital and Fintech Officer at MTN, the group said in a statement on Wednesday.

Cuba will lead the group's strategic expansion of its financial services and digital solutions efforts and "transformation into a digital operator", MTN said.

Cuba recently left Vodacom, where she served as Chief Officer of Strategy and M&A. She was also CEO of Vodafone Ghana for three years, where she was named Telecom CEO of the year in 2018.

"This role gives me the opportunity to drive digital innovation and financial inclusion across the group’s vast footprint. I’m really looking forward to the new challenge and being part of the MTN leadership team," said Cuba.

"Under Yolanda’s leadership, MTN will continue to progressively grow the fintech and digital opportunities in Africa as we see these areas as major drivers of our BRIGHT growth strategy. Yolanda’s start date will be communicated in due course," MTN added.


17 Jul 13:57

JSE falls as global stocks struggle

Robert Brand, Bloomberg, with Fin24

US equity futures pared gains as corporate earnings gave traders food for thought, while European stocks struggled for traction amid fresh trade tensions.

The JSE was down 0.7% at 13:40.

The rand, meanwhile, was even against the dollar at R13.964/$ after opening the day at R13.949 to the greenback. 

US treasuries were steady and European government bonds climbed. Contracts on the S&P 500, Dow Jones and Nasdaq gave up some of their early advances after Bank of America’s net interest income fell short of analysts’ expectations, though CEO Brian Moynihan said the economy appeared to be improving.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index nudged higher amid a mixed bag of reports from companies including Swatch, Ericsson and ASML.

Benchmarks in Japan, Korea and China fell, while Australian stocks rose after sentiment overnight was dented by President Donald Trump saying he could impose more tariffs on China.

The dollar held near a one-week high, while the euro erased a decline after June inflation data for the common-currency region largely met economists’ expectations. Crude oil rose for the first time in three days.


17 Jul 08:39

Rand slightly weaker in early trade 

The rand was trading softer against the dollar in early trade on Wednesday, 

The currency opened at R13.94 and was changing hands at R13.98 at 08:20, down 0.23%.

"Strong retail sales data in the US saw the rand retreat against the dollar after reaching highs of R13.85/$ during trade on Tuesday" said Bianca Botes of Peregrine Treasury Solutions in a note to clients.

"Strong carry trade, supported by the anticipated Fed interest rate cut, continues to support the rand.   Local retail sales are due for release today, with markets expecting an increase of 1.6% year-on-year, while the UK and EU will both release CPI. The US will release housing starts this afternoon."

According to a majority of economists in a Bloomberg poll, meanwhile, the SA Reserve Bank will cut interest rates on Thursday. 


17 Jul 08:39

SA interest rates may fall, and not due to politics

Should Reserve Bank governor Lesetja Kganyago announce a cut in South African interest rates this week, as expected, it won’t be because politicians want him to.

The biggest economic contraction in a decade has led to renewed calls from unions and some ANC officials for an expansion of the Reserve Bank’s mandate to include economic growth and job creation, and for a cut in its key interest rate to help boost output.


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