'As Mboweni started speaking the rand went weaker and weaker and weaker'

Markets hammered the rand on Wednesday, sending the South African currency down 2.4% (to R14.98 against the US dollar) after Finance Minister Tito Mboweni painted a grim picture of the country's rapidly deteriorating finances.

Wednesday’s rout was the worst one in more than a year.

Just as the Finance Minister started speaking, we saw the rand go weaker and weaker and weaker… it was a terrible day… the market was deeply displeased with the picture the Finance Minister painted… Are we in another downward spiral for the currency?

Bruce Whitfield, The Money Show
pixabay.com (2018)

Treasury expects the budget deficit at 5.9% of GDP this year – the highest in a decade and far above a previous forecast.

The Johannesburg Stock Exchange’s All-Share Index was up 0.29% to 55,872.60 points, buoyed by companies with earnings in foreign currencies, especially gold miners, and the expectation of an interest rate cut in the US.

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviewed Andre Cilliers, Director at Treasury One.

We are in for a downward spiral… debt is spiralling… it’s horrendous… economic growth keeps on spiralling downwards…

Andre Cilliers, Director - Treasury One

Listen to the interview in the audio below (and scroll down for more quotes from it).

We could get some reprieve from the US if they lower interest rates… it could temporarily hold the slide in the rand.

Andre Cilliers, Director - Treasury One

It would be irresponsible if the Reserve Bank were considering any cuts [in interest rates] … no Christmas bonus!

Andre Cilliers, Director - Treasury One

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