By: Mfuneko Toyana
South Africa’s rand extended losses, nearing its weakest level in a month as demand for riskier currencies, as well as gold and other safe-haven commodities, waned following France’s election result.
At 0640 GMT the rand weakened 0.62 percent to 13.6950 per dollar compared to a close of 13.6100 overnight in New York.
The local currency slipped more than one percent in the previous session as the euro and dollar piled on the pressure following a wave of relief sparked by Emmanuel Macron’s resounding victory in Sunday’s French presidential ballot.
Commodities also sold off with investors banking on a steadier political and economic climate in Europe and a rate rise in the U.S. in June. Gold remained near seven-week lows, inching 0.1 percent lower, while platinum fell 0.8 percent.
Locally, no major data releases are expected. Analysts at Nedbank Capital said they anticipated the rand would weaken further but was unlikely to drop through technical support at 13.6500.
Stocks were set to open higher at 0700 GMT, with the JSE securities exchange’s Top-40 futures index up 0.43 percent.
The yield for the benchmark government bond due in 2026, added 5 basis points to 8.775 percent.