World Markets

South African rand steady in wait-and-watch trade

Credit: REUTERS/Thomas White

South Africa's rand was flat against the dollar on Wednesday as investors kept a cautious stance ahead of the finance minister's budget speech, U.S. economic data and an interest rate decision by the Federal Reserve.

JOHANNESBURG, Oct 30 - South Africa's rand was flat against the dollar on Wednesday as investors kept a cautious stance ahead of the finance minister's budget speech, U.S. economic data and an interest rate decision by the Federal Reserve.

* Rand was at 14.6300 versus the greenback, as of 0505 GMT, 0.01% lower compared with previous session's close. ZAR=D3

* Finance Minister Tito Mboweni, who will deliver his medium-term budget policy statement at 1200 GMT on Wednesday, is expected to reveal a wider government deficit and higher debt.

* Globally, expectations of further U.S. monetary policy loosening also emboldened investors, with a reduction of 0.25 percentage points at the conclusion of the Fed's two-day meeting later on Wednesday almost seen as a done deal.

* However, that sentiment was countered by worries that a Sino-U.S. first-stage trade deal could be delayed, prompting a slip in shares in Asian markets.

* "Brace yourselves, we are in for a volatile day," Peregrine Treasury Solutions said in a note, adding when it comes to the rand most of the attention will be on Mboweni's speech.

* Government bonds were slightly weaker, with the yield on benchmark 2026 instrument inching up 1 basis points to 8.21% percent. ZAR186=

(Reporting by Emma Rumney; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

((Emma.Rumney@thomsonreuters.com; +27115952832))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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