July 31, 2020 / 7:39 AM / 5 days ago

South Africa's rand recovers from three-week low, remains vulnerable

South African Rand coins are seen in this photo illustration taken September 9, 2015. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South Africa’s rand halted its slide against the dollar early on Friday, as worries a recovery in the U.S. economy would be hampered by the country’s struggle to stem the coronavirus epidemic weakened the U.S. currency.

At 0705 GMT, the rand traded at 16.7425 per dollar, near is close of 16.7500 on Thursday, when it plunged more than 2%.

“As the world continues to grapple with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, the U.S economy is showing its largest contraction on record,” analysts at Nedbank wrote in a note.

“The rand has recovered from the highs posted yesterday, although it appears to remain vulnerable. Markets are likely to be cautious going into the weekend, and liquidity is likely to be tested.”

South Africa’s climbing coronavirus cases, at over 482,000, have also hurt market sentiment.

In fixed income, the yield on the benchmark government bond due in 2030 was down one basis point to 9.285%.

Reporting by Olivia Kumwenda-Mtambo, editing by Larry King

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