Rand stable ahead of local and U.S. GDP data

Analysts and traders said domestic third quarter GDP numbers due out at 0930 GMT would also garner investor interest but was unlikely to move the market significantly.

South African bank notes featuring an image of former South African President Nelson Mandela are displayed at an office in Johannesburg January 17, 2013.    REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko

South Africa's rand was steady against the dollar early on Tuesday, with dealers expecting narrow range trading ahead of U.S. economic data which should offer the latest clue on the timing of interest rake hikes.

The rand was at 14.0790 to the greenback around 0645 GMT, not far off Monday's closing level of 14.0845.

South Africa's ailing economy is expected to escape a technical recession, with a Reuters poll of analysts reaching consensus on 1.1 percent growth in the third quarter after a 1.3 percent contraction in the previous three months.

U.S. GDP numbers were due out at 1330 GMT, and could increase the likelihood that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates in December if the number comes in above market expectations.

"While the local print is unlikely to stir traders into action, the U.S. number will garner a lot more attention, and could very well dictate the fate of the rand in the coming sessions," said Insaan Omar, a trader at Standard Bank.

The JSE securities exchange's Top-40 futures index was down just 0.12 percent, suggesting a flat opening for the local bourse.

In fixed income, the yield on 2026 government debt edged up 2 basis points to 8.47 percent.


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