South African rand firms as inflation accelerates

South African rand firms as inflation accelerates

Aug 24 (Reuters) - South Africa's rand firmed on Wednesday after data showed consumer inflation accelerated in July, signalling the likelihood of domestic interest rates hikes.

At 1549 GMT, the rand ZAR=D3 traded at 16.9500 against the dollar, 0.25% stronger than its previous close.

Headline consumer inflation ZACPIY=ECI quickened to 7.8% year on year in July from 7.4% in June, data from Statistics South Africa showed.

Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast consumer price inflation of 7.7% in July.

Investec analyst Annabel Bishop said in a research note that the Reserve Bank could raise interest rates by at least 50 basis points next month.

On the stock market, the Top-40 .JTOPI index rose 0.07% to 63,079 points, while the broader all-share .JALSH was up 0.05% to 69,808 points.

The government's benchmark 2030 bond ZAR2030= was almost unchanged, with the yield at 10.300%.
Reporting by Bhargav Acharya in Bengaluru and Anait Miridzhanian in Gdansk; Editing by Alex Richardson