By the close of trade on Friday, the South African rand strengthened against the US dollar.

  • As news spread of a potential COVID-19 vaccine amidst a rising number of coronavirus infections.  LA Mayor warns that the city is “on the brink” of shutdown. Florida reports another 12k+ cases as California reports 9k+ new cases.
  • More positive news on a stimulus package has lifted investors risk appetite.
  • In the US, housing starts rose in June by the most since October 2016, amid reports of rising demand for housing in suburbs and rural areas.
  • Building permits rose less-than-expected on a monthly basis in June.
  • The flash Michigan consumer sentiment index unexpectedly dropped in July, due to the widespread resurgence of coronavirus.
  • The Federal Reserve (Fed) announced that it had expanded its Main Street Lending Program to include non-profit organisations.
  • The yield on benchmark government bonds rose on Friday. The yield on 2026 bond rose to 7.57%. Further, the yield on 2023 bond advanced to 4.70% while that for the longer-dated 2030 issue rose to 9.40%.

In early trade on Monday, the US dollar is trading 0.3% higher against the South African rand at R16.7441, while the euro is trading 0.2% higher at R19.1192.  The British pound has marginally declined against the South African rand to trade at R20.9660.

By the close of trade on Friday, the euro advanced against most of the major currencies.

  • A European Union plan to breathe life into economies throttled by the coronavirus pandemic hung in the balance on Sunday as leaders quarrelled over the level of spending on the third day of a summit. The resumption of negotiations in Brussels was delayed until at least 4:00 p.m. (1400 GMT) while the 27 EU member states sought a compromise to win over “frugal” wealthy northern countries. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said an agreement might be beyond their reach. Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, said later that a deal was in reach but there was still “a way to go”
  • The European Central Bank (ECB) Vice-President, Luis de Guindos, stated that he expected European leaders to reach an agreement on the recovery fund very soon and before the end of July.
  • A surge in COVID-19 cases in Australia’s second-biggest city could take weeks to subside despite a lockdown and orders to wear masks, Australia’s acting chief medical officer said on Monday as the country braces for a second wave of infection.
  • On data front, the eurozone’s consumer price index (CPI) slightly rebounded on a monthly basis in June, driven by rise in food, alcohol and tobacco prices.

In early trade on Monday, the euro slipped 0.1% against the US dollar to trade at $1.1418, while it has gained 0.3% against the British pound to trade at GBP0.9119.





For those interested, this is a podcast on their project