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    Rand inches lower as SA virus cases cross 1 million mark

    28 Dec 2020

    JOHANNESBURG - The rand opened slightly weaker on Monday, as concerns over domestic coronavirus cases crossing the one million mark overshadowed optimism around the approval of a $2.3 trillion (R33.45 trillion) pandemic aid and spending package in the US.

    At 0636 GMT, the rand was trading 0.55 percent weaker against the U.S. dollar at 14.5800, but continued to flit between positions of strength and weakness as investors tried to make sense of the prospects of the currency amid rising infections in the second wave.

    South Africa's total cumulative coronavirus cases crossed the one million mark on December 27 with 26,735 deaths, its health ministry said on Sunday.

    In the last few weeks, the rand has shown resilience against a second wave of coronavirus in the country, as hopes of a vaccine boosted riskier currencies globally, and has been hovering around January levels before the pandemic struck the country.

    It has gained nearly 33 percent since its crash in early April.

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