Vaccine rollout day 134 / J & J VACCINE DAY 129 [Phase 2]

By the close of trade on Thursday 17th June 2021, the South African rand weakened against the US dollar.  Here in SA Deputy Chief Justice Raymond Zondo pleads for an extension of 3 months.  Reasons are that the enquiry could be sued if it does not finish its work.   South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen matched US clubhouse pace-setter Russell Henley for the overall lead when darkness halted Thursday’s first round of the US Open, where Phil Mickelson struggled in his bid to complete a career Grand Slam.  The case of the missing 10 babies?  “Tell us where the babies are” that’s what Pretoria News editor Piet Rampedi and Independent Media now want from government after reporting last week  as fact that a Tembisa woman had given birth to decuplets.

  • In South Africa, retail sales surged in April, signaling that a recovery from the economic devastation caused by COVID-19 in 2020 is continuing, even as a third wave of infections raises fresh concerns.
  • Meanwhile, in the US, the number of people filing new claims for unemployment benefits increased for the week ended 11 June, however layoffs are easing amid a reopening economy and a shortage of people willing to work.
  • The Philadelphia Fed manufacturing activity declined for the second consecutive month in June. While it received far less attention that the Fed’s dot plot, the only thing that the Fed actually did change yesterday were its administered rates, as it raised the rate on its overnight Reverse Repo facility from 0% to 0.05% and the rate on excess reserves (IOER) from 0.10% to 0.15%.
  • The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will close its offices on Friday in observance of the newly implemented Juneteenth federal holiday, the agency said in a statement. “The exchanges make their own determinations on operating status for federal holidays, and we understand that major markets will operate with normal market hours,” the SEC said, adding its repository of corporate filings by public companies and brokerage firms, EDGAR, will not accept filings or assist with filer support.
  • The yield on benchmark government bonds rose yesterday. The yield on 2026 bond rose to 7.32%. Further, the yield on 2023 bond advanced to 5.14% while that for the longer-dated 2030 issue rose to 8.92%.

In early trade on Friday, the US dollar is trading lower against the South African rand at R14.0768, while the euro is trading lower at R16.7786.  The British pound has declined against the South African rand to trade at R19.6127.

By the close of trade on Thursday, the euro declined against most of the major currencies.

  • Asia-Pacific markets look more than likely to end the week on a downbeat note as the post-FOMC market reshuffle continues. While the Treasury market appeared to moderate, with the benchmark 10-year note’s yield dropping nine basis points, the safe-haven US Dollar’s runup remained unencumbered.
  • It was a quiet start to the day on the economic calendar this morning. The Japanese Yen was in focus in the early hours, with the Bank of Japan in action later this morning. For the Japanese Yen Inflation figures were in focus this morning. In May, inflationary pressure returned, with the annual core rate of inflation accelerating from -0.1% to 0.1%, which was in line with forecasts. The annual rate of inflation picked up from -0.4% to 0.1%. The Japanese Yen moved from ¥110.273 to ¥110.307 upon release of the figures. At the time of writing, the Japanese Yen was down by 0.08% to ¥110.30 against the U.S Dollar.
  • A sharp spike in energy prices and more expensive services boosted the eurozone’s inflation in May.

In early trade on Friday 18th June 2021, the euro advanced against the US dollar to trade at $1.1926, while it has marginally gained against the British pound to trade at GBP0.8572.