The rand edged firmer on Friday, pausing a week-long slide on fears about the impact of a potential global trade war following US President Donald Trump’s plan to impose tariffs on steel imports.
At 0645 GMT the rand was 0.04% weaker at R11.9200 per dollar, having touched a low of R11.9450 overnight, bringing it closer to the R12.00 technical milestone likely to cause further losses.
The rand has been under pressure all week as the spot prices of precious and industrial metals such as gold, platinum and iron ore have fallen due to the concern’s over Trump’s plan.
The currency was also hurt by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi’s cautious statement on Thursday, which dragged the euro down, and with the rand.
With no major data locally and US non-farm payrolls data due later in the session traders are expected to tread cautiously and opt out of long rand positions.
In fixed income, the benchmark government bond due in 2026 was flat at 8.095%.
Stocks were set to open higher at 0700 GMT, with the JSE securities exchange’s Top-40 futures index up 0.3%.