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South Africa’s rand weakens

JOHANNESBURG — South African rand fell more than 1% against a stronger dollar on Friday in the wake of better-than-expected jobs data from the US economy.

Report by Reuters

By 1555GMT, the rand was trading at 8,75 against the greenback, 1,27% weaker than Thursday’s close of 8,6400 in New York.

“It’s a combination of dollar strength and gold price weakness that is dominating the rand today,” said Manik Narain, a strategist at UBS.

“There seems to be a theme developing in the market where the dollar is actually proving to be the main beneficiary of this data as opposed to emerging currencies in general.”

The dollar hit a three-week peak versus the euro after data showing the world’s largest economy had created more jobs than expected in September.

Market players say the rand could be undermined by strong data which favours the dollar and a weakening gold price.

The euro also slipped against the dollar after a Greek court ruled the country’s pension reform demanded by foreign lenders may be unconstitutional, raising concerns about Athens’ ability to implement austerity measures needed to secure aid.

The eurozone is South Africa’s biggest trading bloc partner.

Government bonds were mixed with yields steady at 5,465% on the 2015 note and 1,5 basis points lower at 7,685% on the benchmark 2026 issue.

The Johannesburg Stock Exchange changed the benchmark bond from the R157 to the R186 due to a lack of liquidity on the currency benchmark bond.

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