South Africa’s rand firms as deficit fears ease


JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa’s rand firmed early on Friday, bucking a downtrend among its emerging market peers, as concerns about South Africa’s budget eased slightly

At 0645 GMT the rand was 0.38% firmer at 15.1850 per dollar, moving further away from 11-month lows above 15.50.

Gains were spurred by the National Treasury’s promise to cut costs and keep spending down.

Rating agency Moody’s welcomed the move, saying the government would likely absorb extra financial support for Eskom with new revenue and expenditure measures in October’s budget review, with departmental cuts an option.

South Africa risks breaching self-imposed fiscal ceilings after granting the deeply indebted utility an extra 230 billion rand in emergency funds.

Reporting by Mfuneko Toyana; editing by John Stonestreet

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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