Rand extends losses in late trade

2012-08-17 17:50 Johannesburg – The rand lost further ground against major currencies in late trade amid investor worries of potential spillover effects from the violence at Lonmin’s Marikana mine into other mining companies‚ dealers said.

At 15:56 local time the rand was bid at R8.3333 to the dollar from Thursday’s close of R8.2198. It was bid at R10.2629 to the euro from its previous close of R10.1558 and at R13.0803 against sterling from R12.9241 before.

The euro was bid at $1.2323 from $1.2355.

Mark Kalkwarf‚ senior portfolio manager at Iquad Group‚ said the local currency had decoupled from the euro/US dollar strength after German’s chancellor Angela Merkel became the latest high profile eurozone official to approve some stimulus measures for the euro. The euro however came off its session highs in the afternoon.

The violence at Lonmin’s Marikana mine in the North West could scare away foreign investment‚ according to some analysts‚ who believe the violence could spread to other mining sectors and hurt employment‚ when nearly a quarter of the country’s work force is unemployed.