LOCKDOWN LEVEL 1

TOTAL DAYS 571 – 07 HOURS 30 MINUTES 

Vaccine rollout day 220
New cases  414
New Deaths 25
Recovery Rate 96,2%
Vaccines Administered 20,200,231

By the close of trade on Friday 15th October 2021, the South African rand strengthened against the US dollar.

  • In the US, the New York Fed’s Empire State business conditions index fell more than expected in October.
  • Consumer sentiment dropped in October amid the consistent spread of the Delta coronavirus variant and supply disruptions.
  • Retail sales surged in September, buoyed by expensive motor vehicle sales, despite fears that supply constraints could disrupt the shopping season amid continued shortages of goods.
  • President of the New York Federal Reserve, John Williams forecasted that high inflation would ease off by next year and stated that he is in no rush to increase interest rates.
  • China tested a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile in August, showing a capability that caught US intelligence by surprise, the Financial Times reported, citing five unnamed sources. The report late on Saturday (Oct 16) said the Chinese military launched a rocket carrying a hypersonic glide vehicle that flew through low-orbit space, circling the globe before cruising towards its target, which it missed by about two dozen miles. “The test showed that China had made astounding progress on hypersonic weapons and was far more advanced than US officials realised,”
  • The yield on benchmark government bonds mostly fell on Friday. The yield on 2026 bond fell to 7.85%. Further, the yield on 2023 bond advanced to 5.33%, while that for the longer-dated 2030 issue fell to 9.40%.

In early trade on Monday 18th October 2021, the US dollar is trading higher against the South African rand at R14.6356, while the euro is trading higher at R16.9626.  The British pound has gained against the South African rand to trade at R20.1056.

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

  • Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey sent a fresh signal on Sunday that the British central bank is gearing up to raise interest rates for the first time since the onset of the coronavirus crisis as inflation risks mount. Bailey said he continued to believe that the recent jump in inflation would be temporary, but that a surge in energy prices would push it higher and make its climb last longer, raising the risk of higher inflation expectations.
  • Data released Monday will show that the Chinese economy slowed sharply in the third quarter as investment in the enormous property sector weakened, Barclays has predicted. Barclays analysts, led by chief China economist Jian Chang, said in a recent note that gross domestic product likely grew 4.6% in the third quarter compared to 7.9% in the second.
  • In the eurozone, trade surplus narrowed in August, following increased energy imports.   The European Union as soon as this week may trigger a new tool that allows it to withhold budget payments to member states that fail to adhere to the bloc’s democratic standards. The so-called conditionality mechanism came into force this year and hasn’t yet been used by the European Commission, the bloc’s executive arm. If utilized, the mechanism could freeze billions of euros in budgetary payments bound for member states. “It’s a question of days or weeks, maximum,” EU Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders said in an interview.
  • Persistent new cases each day and the race to hit vaccination targets are in a race. NZ’s largest city to remain in it’s LVL3 lockdown. There had been discussion about raising the level of the lockdown earlier but that has not been done. New Zealand considering tightening restrictions in Auckland again  ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown A level 4 lockdown in NZ is very harsh indeed. No takeaway food nor deliveries on top of all the other stay at home orders.
  • Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said Monday Japan is keeping an eye on the recent surge in oil prices and will urge major producers to boost output to quell concerns of a supply deficit. “We are closely watching movements in the crude oil market as well as the impact on domestic industry and households,” Kishida told reporters after calling an emergency meeting of Cabinet members including Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno and industry minister Koichi Hagiuda to discuss the matter.

In early trade on Monday, the euro has slipped against the US dollar to trade at $1.1596, while it has marginally gained against the British pound to trade at GBP0.8424.