The South African rand strengthened after the Fed signaled increased openness to a rate cut and after South African President Ramaphosa reappointed his central bank chief. South African central Bank (SARB) governor Lesetja Kganyago term was dues to end in November and markets will support his reappointment for another five years. Central bank independence is growing concern globally, with the recent firing of the Turkish central bank head by Turkish President Erdogan and President Trump’s constant criticism of the Fed. Kganyago’s nod to lead the central bank will ease concerns that the bank will be easily influenced by political pressure. Some analysts were concerned that a populist could have been put in place.
The South African rand broke below the 14.000 level and could see further support at 13.628, which is the 78.6% Fibonacci retracement level 2019 low to high move. To the upside, the 200-day SMA, which currently trades around 14.210, could provide strong resistance.
Emerging markets across benefited across the board following the Powell’s dovish testimony. The lira rallied 1.0% while the Mexican peso paired most of its earlier losses.