South African rand steady before retail sales data


JOHANNESBURG – South Africa’s rand was little changed early on Wednesday as investors awaited the release of retail sales figures.

At 0646 GMT, the rand traded at 14.43 versus the dollar, 0.2 percent stronger than its close on Tuesday.

Analysts polled by Reuters expect September retail sales to have risen by 2.2 percent, after 2.5 percent growth in the previous month.

Consumer spending is one of the top growth drivers for South Africa. The economy is gradually recovering after falling into recession in the first half of the year.

Government bonds were also barely changed, with the yield on the benchmark instrument due in 2026 down 2 basis points at 9.225 percent.

Stocks were set to open slightly lower at 0700 GMT, with the Johannesburg Stock Exchange’s Top-40 futures index down 0.3 percent. (Reuters)