USD = R18.19  AUD = R12.27
GBP = R21.78  DXY = 104.87
EUR = R19.31Brent Crude = $84.50 per barrel

The Rand drifted sideways yesterday as we opened at R18.17 to the Dollar and pretty much stayed around that level, except for the briefest of runs to R18.12.  Our ability to remain unchanged was actually a bit of an achievement as the Dollar advanced on the day which should have sent us weaker, perhaps the feelgood factor from China’s strong economic rebound was still shielding us. 

In the US we had yet another data release that the FED didn’t want to see, this as their weekly initial jobless claims came in lower than expected which is good news for the economy but bad news for the FED as they try to cool demand.  Fed’s Bostic stated the FED may have to do more given high inflation, strong jobs market, won’t decide until a meeting on a proper policy path.

Applications for US unemployment benefits eased last week and a measure of labor costs remained firm in the closing months of 2022, highlighting a tight job market that’s contributing to inflationary pressures. Initial unemployment claims decreased by 2,000 to 190,000 in the week ended Feb. 25, 2023

The United States is adding 37 entities to its trade blacklist for activities including contributing to Russia’s army, supporting China’s military and facilitating or engaging in human rights abuses in Myanmar and China, the Commerce Department said on Thursday. 

PMI survey data indicated that the recovery across China’s service sector picked up speed in February, with firms signalling the steepest increase in activity since last August. The upturn was supported by the strongest rise in new business since April 2021, as the relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions had helped to lift customer numbers and demand. New export order growth also accelerated, hitting the highest in almost four years. The improved business climate drove a renewed and solid increase in employment.

A portrait Pablo Picasso made of his eldest daughter, Maya, in the late 1930s has sold for more than £18 million at auction. The painting, Fillette au bateau, which translates to “girl on the boat,” was originally estimated to sell for between £12m to £18m, but was bought for almost £18.1m at Sotheby’s auction house.

Posted in