The rand steadied, albeit somewhat bruised, after risk sentiment soured this week on rising infections of the more transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus, according to NKC Research.

Risk sentiment remains fragile and the Fed has entered its blackout period before next week’s FOMC meeting, the market will continue to focus on news about the coronavirus and the behaviour of equity markets.

At the close of local trade, the rand depreciated by 0.6 percent ending at R14.66/$, after trading in range of R14.51/$ to R14.67/$.

The rand lost more ground overnight. The expected range of the rand against the dollar today is R14.60/$ to R14.80/$.

South African bourse
The JSE All Share (+1.4 percent) ended higher yesterday, as improvement was seen across the board, except in technology (-0.3 percent) stocks. The rebound in the local bourse was led by resources (+2.6 percent) stocks against the backdrop of investors offloading risky assets. In the overall emerging market sphere, rising Delta-variant cases resulted in a risk off sentiment as investors fear a slowing of economic growth, resulting in the MSCI Emerging Market Index (-0.5 percent) trading lower.

Brent crude oil
The Brent oil price traded lower over concerns of higher Covid-19 infections, resulting in weakening demand. At the close of local trade, benchmark Brent crude futures quoted 0.1 percent softer, at $69.3pb. Crude prices maintained its downward path during Asian trade this morning.

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