Vaccine rollout day 39 / J & J VACCINE DAY 27     

By the close of trade on Thursday 11th March 2021 the Rand had gained on the previous days closing.

  • President Biden signs $1.9T Covid relief bill into law; ​includes $1,400 checks, $300/wk jobless benefits, child allowance of up to $3,600 for one year, $125B for K-12 schools, $25B for rental assistance, $14B for vaccine distribution.
  • The Federal Reserve Flow of Funds data for 4Q20 shows some astonishing figures. Despite the pandemic and the resulting lockdowns, business closures and, at its worst point, the loss of more than 20 million jobs, the US household balance sheet improved massively through 2020. Total assets jumped by $12.6tn not quite as good as the $13.2tn gain in 2019, but remarkable given what was endured last year. Meanwhile, household liabilities increased by only $657bn to leave net worth up $11.9tn a gain equivalent to 57% of 2020 GDP!
  • The Bank of Canada sees the potential for a pleasant surprise from savings-fuelled household spending, but also that monetary stimulus will continue to be required for some time as the economy gradually recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic and is reshaped somewhat in its wake. Bank of Canada Deputy Governor Lawrence Schembri on Thursday said that while many people have lost their jobs and taken hits to their finances during the pandemic, “forced and precautionary” savings have added up to an estimated $180 billion or so.
  • Most European Central Bank policy makers have no intention of expanding their 1.85 trillion-euro ($2.2 trillion) emergency stimulus program despite their pledge on Thursday to step up the pace of bond buying to keep yields in check, according to officials familiar with the matter.
  • Chancellor Rishi Sunak said he’s confident the U.K. will remain an attractive place to do business after his plans to raise taxes on corporate profits were attacked by business groups and members of his own Conservative Party. Britain will still have one of the lowest corporation tax rates among Group of 20 nations, Sunak told the cross-party Treasury Committee on Thursday. Moreover, businesses would factor in the full range of taxes and reliefs, as well as skills, infrastructure and research and development incentives.
  • Asian stock markets are mostly higher in cautious trading on Friday, following the broadly positive cues overnight from Wall Street as the $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package got its final seal from President Joe Biden to become a law, paving the way for an economic recovery. Technology and oil stocks helped lead the way higher amid continued bargain hunting. Asian stocks ended broadly higher on Thursday. The Australian stock market is rising on Friday, with the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 just below the 6,800 level, following the broadly positive cues overnight from Wall Street.

In early trade on Friday the currency pairings were:

ZARUSD 14.9102

ZAREUR  17.8523

ZARGBP  20.8478

ZARAUD  11.6077