Rand climbs after finmin reacts to reports of his arrest, stocks up

By 1615 GMT the rand gained 0.8 percent to 15.5300 per dollar, just shy of the session best of 15.4905 it reached after the finance minister's statement.

A street money changer counts South African Rands in Harare, Zimbabwe, May 5, 2016.  REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo

South Africa's rand rallied nearly one percent late on Tuesday after Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said reports of his imminent arrest amounted to an attack on the Treasury.

Metal and mining stocks buoyed the bourse.

By 1615 GMT the rand gained 0.8 percent to 15.5300 per dollar, just shy of the session best of 15.4905 it reached after the finance minister's statement. The rand fell to a two-month low on Monday after the report on Gordhan's arrest.

Gordhan said in a statement that weekend reports of his arrest were "extremely distressing", and that he could not believe that he was being investigated or possibly charged for something he was innocent of.

Gordhan is being investigated by the elite police unit the Hawks for his role in the creation of a covert surveillance unit in the revenue services during his time as head of the agency.

Traders said the rand's rebound from Monday's lows was also partly due to technical factors and mixed data from the U.S.

"There will be a short term consolidation on the rand technically from the over extension of the large move yesterday," said head of foreign exchange at Capilis Asset Managers Giacomo Bonavera.

Government bonds were weaker, with the benchmark government issue due in 2026 adding 9 basis points to 9.33 percent.

On the equities market, higher commodity prices buoyed resources, with the market rebounding after last week's rout.

Anglo American rose 4.7 percent to 143.6 rand, while Kumba Iron Ore rose 3.5 percent at 93.2 rand.

Steel and iron ore futures in China rose for the second day in a row.

Vodacom's shares rose 2.4 percent to 163.9 rand, gaining for the second straight day after the mobile operator reported higher full-year profit on Monday.

The All-Share index closed higher at 0.22 percent to 52,529 points, with the benchmark Top-40 index up 0.29 percent to 46,393.

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