JOHANNESBURG Feb 24 South Africa's rand was
little changed in early trade on Friday after it hit an 18
month-high in the previous session.
* At 0733 GMT, the rand traded 0.02 percent down at
12.8850 per dollar.
* The rand stayed near to its New York close on Thursday as
momentum fuelled its rally to break key technical levels after
reaching an 18 month-high against the dollar earlier in the
* "The rand has led the charge, but not because of anything
locally. Simple momentum, rather, appears to be the driver — a
break of key levels generates further rand buying and so further
breaks," RMB Global Markets analyst John Cairns wrote in a note.
* In fixed income, the yield on the benchmark government
bond due in 2026 firmed slightly, shedding 1 basis
points to 8.690 percent.
* On the bourse, stocks opened lower, with the JSE
securities exchange's Top-40 index down 0.62 percent.
(Reporting by Tanisha Heiberg; Editing by James Macharia)