South Africa’s rand firmed in early trade on Tuesday, staying close to a five-week high touched in the previous session as easing concerns over the Omicron coronavirus variant boosted risk appetite.
At 0640 GMT, the rand traded at 15.5100 against the dollar, 0.26% firmer than its previous close. The currency hit 15.5000 on Monday, its strongest since Nov. 18.
Investors appeared to be guardedly optimistic that the global recovery would regain steam next year even though the emergence of the highly-transmissible Omicron variant has prompted border closures and mobility restrictions in most countries once again.
Several reports have indicated that the Omicron variant caused milder symptoms and carried a lower risk of hospitalisation than the Delta variant of the coronavirus.
In fixed income, the yield on the benchmark 2030 government bond was down 1.5 basis points to 9.275%.