The rand was back under R12,50 to the dollar on Wednesday morning, strengthening more than 2 percent over Christmas on reports the new ANC national executive committee (NEC) wants President Jacob Zuma’s resignation. City Press reported on Christmas Eve that ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa and secretary-general Ace Magashule would lead discussions with Zuma to persuade him to voluntarily step down.
“It was said that he should be requested [to step down] outside of the formalities of the NEC processes, to avoid making it appear as if the NEC removed him. If he does not co-operate, a resolution of the NEC can be easily secured. We all agree that the sooner he goes, the better,” an anonymous ANC leader told City Press.
The rand strengthened 2,2 percent from R12,77 to the dollar on Friday to R12,49 to the dollar at 6.30am on Wednesday. It strengthened from R15 to the euro to R1,.82 to the euro, and from R16,89 to the pound to R16,1 to the pound.
The JSE enjoyed a Santa rally before the Christmas holiday, with the all share index gaining 1,3 percent on Thursday and a further 0,05 percent on Friday before closing at noon. Sasol may benefit on Wednesday from Brent crude oil prices rising 1,9 percent to $66,67/barrel following an explosion in a Libyan pipeline.
Boxing Day was not a holiday in the US, and the New York and Nasdaq stock exchanges fell on Tuesday despite US President Donald Trump signing the tax bill on Friday. — Business Day