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Rand pauses; fragile risk appetite seen weighing

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The rand was little changed in early trade on Thursday, but analysts said fragile risk appetite globally was likely to weigh on the currency.

The rand dropped around 1% against the US dollar on Wednesday, as the US currency gained along with surging Treasury yields.

At 0650 GMT, the rand traded at 18.30 against the dollar, near its previous close of 18.31.

“A hawkish Fed, the chaos in UK politics, and higher inflation data out of both the UK and Eurozone are weighing on risk sentiment,” Andre Cilliers, currency strategist at TreasuryONE, said in a research note.

South African data on Wednesday showed inflation eased slightly in September, to 7.5% year on year from 7.6% in August, in line with analysts’ forecasts. But retail sales came in worse than predicted, growing 2.0% in August compared to economists’ expectations for 4.2% growth.

No major domestic economic data releases are due on Thursday.

The government’s benchmark 2030 bond was slightly weaker in early deals, with the yield rising 4 basis points to 10.910%.

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