September 10, 2019 / 6:44 AM / 2 months ago

South Africa's rand firms ahead of manufacturing data

JOHANNESBURG, Sept 10 (Reuters) - South Africa’s rand firmed against the dollar in early trade on Tuesday ahead of manufacturing data that will give investors fresh clues about the health of the most industrialised African economy.

At 0631 GMT, the rand was 0.17% firmer at 14.7500 per dollar, compared with its previous close of 14.7750.

Market players will turn their focus to July manufacturing production data expected at 1100 GMT, where output is forecast to fall 1% year-on-year, according to a Refinitiv poll.

“A figure that prints above market expectations should soothe concerns over the health of South Africa’s economy ahead of credit rating by Moody’s in November,” Lukman Otunuga, senior research Analyst at FXTM, said in a note.

Abroad, buying sentiment towards the rand has been supported by stimulus hopes to support growth in the world’s major economies, which saw the rand rally to a 5-week high on Monday.

Bianca Botes, treasury partner at Peregrine Treasury Solutions, said in a note local political factors “remain overshadowed by the global environment favouring risk-on trade for the time being, offering underlying support for the local unit.”

Bonds were weaker, with the yield on the benchmark 2026 issue up 1 basis point to 8.135%. (Reporting by Nqobile Dludla; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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