South Africa's rand slips; MTN drops on U.S. complaint


By 1600 GMT, the rand ZAR=D3 was around 0.3% weaker than its previous close at 14.08 per dollar after briefly touching its strongest level sincelate Julyearlier in the day.

The rand has gained more than 4% against the dollar this month, despite a raft of data releases showing a weak economy and nationwide blackouts by state power firm Eskom. Investors have overlooked the negatives because ofthe high yield associated with rand assets.

The rally has seen the rand hurdle key technical resistance points, first at 14.40 and then 14.20, but after dropping below the 14.00 psychological level the currency lost momentum.

On the Johannesburg bourse, the Top-40 Index .JTOPI ended up 0.49% at 51,398 points, while the All-Share Index .JALSH rose 0.48% to 57,704 points.

An outlier was telecoms firm MTN, whose shares fell 0.74% after the company said it was reviewing allegations raised in a U.S. complaint which accuses several firms of paying protection money to militant Islamist groups in Afghanistan.

South African government bonds fell, with the yield on the benchmark 2026 issue ZAR186= up 7.5 basis points at 8.24%.

(Reporting by Mfuneko Toyana and Alexander Winning; Editing by Angus MacSwan)

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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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