Rising geopolitical tensions between the US and China reduced some of yesterday’s risk appetite. The US has ordered the closure of the Chinese consulate in Houston, and the Chinese have threatened retaliation if the decision is not reversed. The Dollar is trading unchanged at 1.1582 against the Euro and 1.2745 against the Pound while EM currencies are off yesterday’s best levels as market players take a cautious stance.
The Rand, which touched 16.3350 at one stage yesterday, is currently quoted at 16.4700. Yesterday’s local retail sales data for April and May showed a drop of 50.4% and 12.0% respectively as the impact of the lockdown was reflected in the numbers. The MPC’s rate decision is due today with consensus for a 0.25% cut in the repo rate.
Wall Street managed to close positive last night while Asian markets are mixed this morning. US futures are marginally in the green again today.
Oil and Gold are both trading higher this morning in Asian trade. Gold is at $1 871.15 and WTI, and Brent crude is at $42.05 and $44.43 respectively.
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