Rand up slightly in early trade as US breaks for Memorial Day

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The rand gained 0.4% in early trade on Monday morning, in the wake of ratings agency S&P choosing to keep SA's sovereign credit rating unchanged in a late night announcement on Friday. 

"There were no real surprises at all, with S&P sticking to its previous assessments and reaffirming what they have always maintained about the economy," noted Wichard Cilliers, director and head of dealing at TreasuryONE, in a morning note. 

At 10:18 the local currency was trading at R12.45/$, after opening the week's trade at R12.51 to the greenback. 

Cilliers said trade on Monday would be dampened due to public holidays in the US and the UK. 

"The US and UK markets are closed [on Monday] for Memorial Day and the Spring Bank holiday, which implies that this week starts on a dull note with no proper direction for US dollar and sterling trade."

"We start the day at R12.45 and do not expect too much today. Look to buy dips below R12.40."

NKC African Economics, meanwhile, said in a note to investors that it expected the rand to trade in the range of R12.30/$ to R12.55/$.

Bianca Botes, corporate treasury manager at Peregrine Treasury Solutions, said she expected the rand to weaken somewhat over the next few days to around R12.60/$ to the greenback, saying rates below R12.50/$ remained "unsustainable given the local and global economic environments". 

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