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Today, the South African rand has weakened against the US dollar, after HSBC’s preliminary survey indicated that manufacturing activity in China expanded at a slower-than-expected pace in February.
The yield on most benchmark government bonds fell on Friday. The yield on the 2015 bond fell to 5.28%, while that for the longer-dated 2026 issue was almost flat at 7.23%.
At 06:00 SAST, the US dollar is trading 0.4% higher against the South African rand at R8.8985, while the euro is trading 0.3% higher at R11.7315.
The Japanese yen has declined against its major peers this morning, amid speculation that Japan’s Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, is likely to nominate Asian Development Bank President, Haruhiko Kuroda, who is an advocate of aggressive monetary easing, as the next Bank of Japan Governor. On Friday, the British pound dropped against its major counterparts, after Moody’s Investors Service cut its credit rating on the UK to “Aa1” from “Aaa”. On Friday, the euro closed almost flat against the US Dollar, as data indicating a rise in the German business confidence was offset by a warning from the European Commission that the eurozone economy might contract in 2013 and following lower-than-expected repayment by banks in the second LTRO.
At 06:00 SAST, the has euro slipped 0.1% against the US dollar to trade at $1.3186, while it has gained 0.2% against the British pound to trade at GBP0.8720.
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