South Africa's rand little changed; stocks slightly higher

South Africa's rand little changed; stocks slightly higher
(Updates prices, adds Tiger Brands)

JOHANNESBURG, March 12 (Reuters) - South Africa's rand steadied on Monday, holding on to gains notched up in the previous session as a benign U.S. jobs report eased worries about inflation and faster rate hikes.

At 1526 GMT, the rand traded at 11.8175 per dollar, not far off its New York close of 11.82000 on Friday.

The currency has largely stayed at elevated levels this year, buoyed by expectations of faster economic growth under South Africa's new political leadership.

"The rand has continued to benefit from favourable sentiment in the overall emerging market sphere, but remains vulnerable to shifts in expectations regarding the pace of U.S. monetary policy tightening," NKC African Economics said in a note.

On the bourse, Tiger Brands slumped 2.6 percent after a human rights lawyer said at the weekend he was preparing a class action lawsuit against the food producer, linked to a deadly listeria outbreak.

Overall, the blue-chip JSE Top-40 index gained 0.18 percent to 52,440 and the broader All-share index inched up 0.04 percent to 59,194.

In fixed income, government bonds were a touch firmer with the yield for the benchmark government bond due in 2026 down one basis point to 8.065 percent. (Reporting by Tiisetso Motsoeneng; editing by Andrew Roche)

2018-03-12 18:00:44

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