Here’s what is happening in South Africa:
- The Guptas are back in South Africa. The family made widely publicized exit from the country after an alleged state capture plot came to light earlier in the year, but according to the family’s spokesperson, the real reason for leaving was to attend a wedding. He said that the family is very much South African, and even though their relationship with president Jacob Zuma is strained, it continues.
- Turbulence and uncertainty lie ahead as the UK and linked countries (including South Africa) await the outcome of the Brexit vote this Thursday. Investors have remained skittish around the issue, and lingering anxiety has led to as much as $1 trillion being wiped off the global markets. On the plus side, the Brexit has pushed investors back to gold stocks, which has boosted South Africa somewhat.
- South African markets gained on Friday as higher gold prices lifted gold miners and the rand benefited as investors reassessed the probability of Britain voting to leave the European Union in a referendum next week. On Monday the rand was trading at R15.00 to the dollar, R21.90 to the pound and R17.03 to the euro.
- In global news, Asian stocks gained as some fears that Britain would vote to leave the European Union abated on Monday, boosting a recovery in both sterling and investors’ taste for risk assets. US stock index futures rose on Sunday tracking gains in the British pound.
- Oil extended gains in Asian trading on Monday as a weaker dollar and easing worries over Britain’s possible exit from the European Union helped support crude. Brent crude futures settled up$1.98, or 4.2 percent, at $49.17 a barrel, while US crude futures rose $1.77, or 3.8 percent, to settle at $47.98.
In other news: Political violence has erupted in Tshwane ahead of the announcement of the ANC’s mayoral and municipal candidates. Gunmen opened fire on a group of ANC members, killing one, while two others were hit and stabbed in pangas. This is the latest in a string of politically motivated attacks ahead of the 3 August local elections.