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

  • Appetite for riskier assets grew amid positive news on coronavirus vaccines.
  • Harrisburg, PA – Following certifications of the presidential vote submitted by all 67 counties late Monday, Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar today certified the results of the November 3 election in Pennsylvania for president and vice president of the United States. Shortly thereafter, as required by federal law, Governor Tom Wolf signed the Certificate of Ascertainment for the slate of electors for Joseph R. Biden as president and Kamala D. Harris as vice president of the United States. The certificate was submitted to the Archivist of the United States.  Pennsylvania’s secretary of state on Tuesday certified the results of its presidential election, confirming that President-elect Joe Biden defeated President Donald Trump, Gov. Tom Wolf announced in a tweet. The Keystone State’s certification of Biden’s victory came a day after Michigan certified that the former Democratic vice president had won its own election. It also came a day after the Trump administration authorized the release of federal funds to Biden to begin his transition into office. Despite that authorization, the Trump campaign is still waging a long-shot legal effort in a federal appeals court.
  • The US, consumer confidence fell more-than-expected in November, amid a widespread resurgence in new COVID-19 infections and business restrictions, reinforcing expectations for a sharp slowdown in economic growth in 4Q20.
  • Risk assets had a solid session overnight as investors gain further confidence on the prospect of a broad and strong economic recovery, supported by the possible distribution of vaccines before year end and a peaceful US presidential transition. Cyclicals and small-caps are in vogue leading the gains in equity markets while oil has led the charge within the commodity space, gold the notable underperformer. The USD is broadly weaker with commodity linked currencies at the top of the leader board. European equities European equities opened sharply higher embracing yesterday’s news that President Trump had opened the door to a smooth Whitehouse transition.
  • The yield on benchmark government bonds fell yesterday. The yield on 2026 bond dipped to 6.95%. Further, the yield on 2023 bond declined to 4.15%, while that for the longer-dated 2030 issue dropped to 8.86%.

In early trade on Wednesday, the US dollar is trading marginally lower against the South African rand at R15.1972, while the euro is trading higher at R18.0922.  The British pound has declined against the South African rand to trade at R20.3022.

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

  • Data showed that Germany’s gross domestic product (GDP) improved in 3Q20, as Europe’s largest economy partly recovered from an unprecedented plunge caused by the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. In contrast, German business morale fell for the second month in a row in November. Chinese President Xi Jinping said Tuesday that China stands ready to strengthen exchanges and cooperation with Germany on COVID-19 vaccines and push for the vaccines to be fairly distributed as a global public good, especially for the benefit of developing countries. Xi made the remarks in a phone conversation with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Recalling that he and Merkel both attended the Group of 20 summit days ago
  • The Bank of England interest-rate setter, Jonathan Haskel stated that it was too soon to know whether progress on developing COVID-19 vaccines would prompt the central bank to upgrade its economic forecasts for 2021 significantly.
  • France’s Macron announces gradual easing in lockdown restrictions from November 28th 2020.   Macron further stated that bar and restaurants would remain closed over Christmas and that ski resorts will reopen in January when conditions would be more condusive.

In early trade on Wednesday, the euro advanced against the US dollar to trade at $1.1910, while it has gained against the British pound to trade at GBP0.8936.