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

  • The historically sharp sell-off in oil prices this week was just the latest entry to a growing list of chaotic market occurrences that haven’t been seen in years – or even decades. Referred to as a BLACK SWAN EVENT, few assets have avoided the massive surge in volatility that’s gripped the landscape in recent weeks.
  • In the US, the White House and Congress negotiated measures to bolster the US economy and people’s pay checks against the coronavirus outbreak’s impact.
  • The US President, Donald Trump, advocated for payroll tax relief and other measures to help businesses deal with the economic slowdown resulting from the coronavirus epidemic. However, lawmakers stated that they preferred targeted measures to assist hourly workers and the battered travel industry.
  • China is sending the surest sign yet that it has the coronavirus under control. Chinese leader Xi Jinping finally visited Wuhan, the epicenter of the epidemic, for the first time since the crisis began in January. Xi arrived in the city this morning to “inspect the prevention and control work of the coronavirus,”
  • The yield on benchmark government bonds ended mixed yesterday. The yield on 2021 bond advanced to 6.09% while that for the longer-dated 2030 issue fell to 9.18%.

In early trade on Wednesday, the US dollar is trading 0.1% higher against the South African rand at R15.9573, while the euro is trading 0.5% higher at R18.0759.  The British pound has gained 0.2% against the South African rand to trade at R20.6099.

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

  • The eurozone economy rose at a slower pace in 4Q19, as investments and consumer and government spending just offset the impact of a sharp rise in imports.
  • Eurozone employment rose more than expected on an annual basis in 4Q19.
  • Tomorrow, there will be a host of data coming out from the UK and volatility is expected to be on the higher side. Chief amongst the data will be the GDP growth and the Manufacturing Production. A few hours later, we will have another important print, the Annual Budget Report. It has been hot-and-cold when it comes to UK GDP numbers so far this year.

In early trade on Wednesday, the euro has advanced 0.4% against the US dollar to trade at $1.1330, while it has gained 0.4% against the British pound to trade at GBP0.8771.