LOCKDOWN LEVEL 1 Ver3 [ DAY 8]  

TOTAL DAYS 377 – 7 HOURS 25 MINUTES

Vaccine rollout day 65 / J & J VACCINE DAY 53

 By the close of trade on 6th March 2021, the South African rand strengthened against the US dollar.

  • Following four years of a decidedly protectionist agenda, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen is here to tell you that things are about to change in a major way. The Cabinet official most in charge of President Joe Biden’s economic agenda set forth a bold set of principles Monday that differ from the previous administration’s priorities by about as much as one could imagine. Gone is former President Donald Trump’s saber-rattling against China. In its place is a policy that “will be competitive where it should be, collaborative where it can be” but only “adversarial where it must be.”
  • The International Monetary Fund raised its outlook for global economic growth again on Tuesday, forecasting worldwide output would rise 6% this year, a rate not seen since the 1970s, thanks largely to the unprecedented policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly in the United States.
  • In the US, job openings rose to a two-year high in February while hiring picked up as strengthening domestic demand amid increased COVID-19 vaccinations and additional pandemic aid from the government boost companies’ needs for more workers.
  • U.S. President Joe Biden said on Tuesday he has not spoken to Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, noting the central bank is an independent agency. “I think the Federal Reserve is an independent operation and starting off my presidency I want to be real clear that I’m not going to do the kinds of things that have been done in the last administration,” Biden told reporters. Biden still has significant room to make his mark on the Fed. Powell’s term is up next February, when Biden can choose to extend his appointment, and there is an empty seat on the Fed’s Board of Governors.
  • GameStop sparked a frenzy on Reddit that lit up TikTok. The dizzying rally for the game retailer’s stock that followed helped establish social media as one of the most popular sources for financial information, tips and advice, particularly among Gen Z, according to a new CreditCards.com report second only to friends and family for the 18-to-24 cohort. In fact, Gen Zer’s are nearly five times as likely to say they get financial advice including stock tips from social media as adults in their 40s or older, the report found.et this delivered to your inbox, and more info about our products and services.
  • Russia announced the start of mass military drills, ratcheting up tensions with neighboring Ukraine amid Western concerns about the risk of renewed fighting. More than 4,000 training exercises will be held in military districts across Russia in April, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Tuesday, in comments posted on the ministry’s website.  President Volodymyr Zelenskiy called on NATO on Tuesday to lay out a path for Ukraine to join the Western military alliance, after days in which Russia has massed troops near the conflict-hit Donbass region.
  • Iran and major powers will continue to discuss ways to revive the 2015 nuclear deal that former U.S. president Donald Trump abandoned in 2018, Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator told state television on Tuesday. “The talks in Vienna were constructive … our next meeting will be on Friday,” Abbas Araqchi said. He also added that Tehran would not suspend its enrichment of uranium to 20% fissile purity in return for the release of $1 billion of its funds blocked in other countries because of U.S. sanctions reimposed on Iran since 2018.
  • The yield on benchmark government bonds fell yesterday. The yield on 2026 bond fell to 7.45%. Further, the yield on 2023 bond declined to 5.18% while that for the longer-dated 2030 issue fell to 9.44%.

In early morning trade on Wednesday 7th April 2021, the US dollar is trading lower against the South African rand at R14.5172, while the euro is trading lower at R17.2366.  The British pound has declined against the South African rand to trade at R20.0688.

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

  • The eurozone Sentix morale rose in April to the highest level since August 2018, driven by an improved view of the current situation.
  • The total number of billionaires exploded over the course of the coronavirus pandemic — and they individually became extraordinarily wealthier during the last 12 months. That’s according to a new report from Forbes, which does one of the most complete analyses each spring about the state of the billionaire class across the globe. Tracking the net worths of the wealthy is painstaking work that requires sifting through arcane filings — and the end results are not perfect — but the estimates offered by Forbes represent one of the best stabs at covering the scale of income inequality in the world.
  • Russian inflation jumped to the highest level in more than four years in March, adding pressure on the central bank to keep raising interest rates. Annual inflation accelerated to 5.8% in March, the Federal Statistics Service reported Tuesday, in line with forecasts but well above the central bank’s 4% target.
  • RB of India Governor Das: MPC voted to keep repo rate unchanged at 4%, maintaining an accommodative stance for as long as needed.

In early trade on Wednesday, the euro has slipped against the US dollar to trade at $1.1872, while it has weakened against the British pound to trade at GBP0.8622.