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Market Commentary | The week that was

The global rating agency, Standard & Poor (S&P) has upgraded its outlook of South Africa’s economy to positive from stable. This was largely due to strong commodity prices which are boosting the country’s tax income and exports, as well as improved structural reforms. The country’s credit rating, however, remains on junk status, one step closer to investment grade which South Africa lost in 2017.

Bloomberg News reported on 22 May that the Russian rouble surged to the highest level in seven years against the euro as more European companies appeared to be complying with President Vladimir Putin’s demand that they switch to paying in Russia’s currency for natural gas. The currency jumped by 9% against the euro and 5 % against the dollar.

News from the United States is that stocks have advanced after President Joe Biden said China tariffs imposed by the Trump administration were under consideration. Europe’s Stoxx 600 Index and US equity futures jumped more than 1% after the S&P 500 dropped for a seventh straight week. Asian stocks rose, while Chinese technology stocks slid, reported Moneyweb (9 May 2022).

Looking at the week ahead; US Inflation rate will be a priority, along with US corporate earnings reports. Russia and Ukraine will also remain an area of focus.

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