Hawkish Powell boosts the dollar

The rand lost momentum after US Fed Chair Jerome Powell took to the podium at his first congressional testimony yesterday.

The local unit opens at 13.27/$ after Powell spoke hawkishly regarding the US economy, raising expectations of further interest rate hikes during the course of 2018. Locally the rand also took a slight knock after Q2 consumer confidence dropped from record highs in the previous quarter, but the data still indicated that consumers are optimistic about the local economy.

On the data calendar today: local inflation and retail sales figures are released, with markets eagerly awaiting the SARB’s interest rate decision tomorrow.

Latest Rates

USD/ZAR 13.3207
GBP/ZAR 17.4367
EUR/ZAR 15.4941
ZAR/JPY 8.4887
CNY/ZAR 1.9853
AUD/ZAR 9.7924
CHF/ZAR 13.2854
AED/ZAR 3.6273
SGD/ZAR 9.7356
NOK/ZAR 1.6288<br
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Springbok training camp news: Coach Rassie invites five uncapped players

Rassie Erasmus brings in some young guns to the Springbok training squad. Also, hardman Eben Etzebeth is set to make a comeback.

Preparations for next month’s Rugby Championship are well underway in the Springbok camp. With the Super Rugby season winding down……….
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Five quick facts about Dale Steyn: the Proteas spearhead

The Proteas welcomed back another one of their greats when they took to the field for the first Test against Sri Lanka in Galle on Thursday, as Dale Steyn returned to the side after months nursing a heel injury.
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Super Rugby News: Quarter-final fixtures, teams and kick off times

The format continues to irk, but here are the quarter-final teams, fixtures and kick off times for this season’s Super Rugby.

After what feels like forever, Super Rugby’s quarter-finals have been decided. The format hasn’t gone down well with everyone this season, but here we are.

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Over 100 visa-free travel destinations are now available to South Africans

South Africa has officially moved into the top 50 powerful passports on the planet, as 11 more countries granted SA nationals visa-free entry in the last year.

BusinessTech shared travel advisors Henley & Partners’ latest travel index, and it is good news for any of us with a touch of wanderlust.

The total amount of countries South Africans can visit without applying for a visa stands at 102. So if there’s somewhere on your bucket list you want to visit, now might be the perfect time to take to the skies.

Countries that are visa-free to enter if you are South African
We’ve grouped together all the countries that are as good as hassle-free to travel to. The Caribbean is particularly inviting, as is South America. However, only three European countries offer a visa-free route for South Africans.

Angola, Antigua & Barbuda, Argentina, Bahamas, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Belize, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Cayman Islands, Chile, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Falkland Islands, Georgia, Grenada, Guatemala, Haiti, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Kenya, Kosovo, Lesotho, Macao, Malawi, Malaysia, Mauritius, Micronesia, Mozambique, Namibia, Nicaragua, Niue, Palestinian Territories, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Qatar, Reunion, Russia, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Saint Lucia, Senegal, Singapore, South Korea, St Vincent & the Grenadines, Swaziland, Tanzania, Thailand, Trinidad & Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, Tunisia, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe.

Countries that require an eTA or visa on arrival for South Africans
Okay, so you don’t have to go through all the tedious paperwork and dreaded submissions. But technically, you do need to complete a visa once you land. These are infinitely more simple than doing a “formal submission” back home, though.

Armenia, Benin, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Comoros, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Iran, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Madagascar, Mauritania, Maldives, Nepal, Oman, Palau, Rwanda, Samoa, Seychelles, Somalia, Sri Lanka, St. Helena, Timor-Leste, Tajikistan, Togo, Turkey, Tuvalu, Uganda and Zambia.

What is an ETA visa?
Some places will require an ETA (Electronic Travel Visa) before you can enter. It is an electronically stored authority equivalent to a visa. There is no stamp or label placed in your passport, but you will have to complete an online form for this.

When booking your travel, consult with the airline to find if an ETA visa is applicable to your destination of choice.


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Weekend travel information for 13 July 2018

Here is our weekly travel update to help you get around London this weekend, 14 and 15 July, and also the following week.

Most of the network will be open with services running as normal, so you’ll be able to get wherever you need to go, but to ensure your journey goes smoothly please check if any of the following affect you.

London Underground

Central line
From 00:45 on Saturday 14 and all day Sunday 15 July, Central line trains will not stop at Bank station. This includes Night Tube. For Bank, exit at St. Paul’s station. This is due to platform engineering work.

Metropolitan line
On Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 July, there will be no service between Aldgate and Wembley Park. This is due to ballast and track replacement work.

London Overground
On Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 July, there will be no service between Clapham Junction and Willes
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Super Rugby News: Fixtures, latest log and playtime for 14 July

It’s the final round of matches before we head for the playoffs. Here’s what you need to know.

After what feels like ages, Super Rugby is drawing to a close. South Africa’s teams haven’t had the best season, but the Lions and the Sharks remain in the running to secure a play-off spot.
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Nine simple steps on how to move to Australia and gain citizenship

We’ve got your nice and easy guide to chasing down the Australian dream. Figures released last month show that a higher percentage of expats are choosing to live in Australia ahead of any other global destination.

And who can blame them? The much-loved island and it’s unique way of love isn’t just a draw for tourists; people are upping sticks and moving to the land down under and never looking back.

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South African tennis player, Kevin Anderson beats Roger Federer In Wimbledon Quarter-Finals

South Africa’s Kevin Anderson has beaten defending Wimbledon champion Roger Federer in five gruelling sets.

Anderson took it 2-6, 6-7, 7-5, 6-4, 13-11.

Federer took the first two sets and then the South African returned strongly to take the third and fourth sets.

The two players then held their serves brilliantly in the fifth and decisive set, until Anderson broke Federer in the 23rd game to go up 12-11.

Anderson then held the 24th game to clinch one of tennis’ most famous victories.

It’s Anderson’s very first time in the Wimbledon semi-finals and he will now face either Milos Raonic or John Isner for a place in the final.

This feat follows Anderson’s 2015 battle with Novak Djokovic, where he took the Serb to five sets in the Wimbledon round of 16 in 2015.


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Trade wars are hotting up

The Trump Administration has released a $200bn hot list of Chinese goods to be hit with a 10% tariff ‘after a 2-month consultation period’.

This is not good news for emerging markets, and we are yet to hear what retaliatory measures China has up its sleeve. Speaking of Trump, the US President set off on his European adventure yesterday, where he’ll be meeting NATO leaders, British PM May and Russian President Putin (watch this space closely, or maybe just Twitter).

The rand is back over 13.40/$, and will struggle to claw back lost ground if there is no de-escalation in trade war rhetoric. Locally, struggling national carrier SAA announced that they had reached an agreement with the government to find an equity partner, which should lift the burden off state coffers. It’s England vs Croatia @ 20:00 tonight, enjoy!

Latest Rates

USD/ZAR 13.4381
GBP/ZAR 17.8350
EUR/ZAR 15.7703
ZAR/JPY
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