The rand fell for a 10th day in its longest losing streak in five years after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said monthly bond purchases may be slowed and South African clothing workers went on strike.
South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said companies, the government and labor unions need to end disputes that are halting mines and have pushed the rand to a four-year low against the dollar.
Lonmin Plc, the world’s third-largest platinum producer, said operations at its Marikana mine in South Africa have been halted after workers refused to go underground following a union official’s death.
Anglo American Platinum Ltd., the biggest producer of the metal, sought to appease government anger by scaling back planned job losses at its South African mines to about 6,000, less than half those originally planned.
Slowing inflation and the rand’s recovery this quarter have traders giving South African Reserve Bank Governor Gill Marcus better-than-even odds of emulating her peers in Europe and Australia in cutting interest rates.
Sub-Saharan African nations outside South Africa are selling $7 billion of debt this year, more than in the past five years combined, as yields more than double those of Treasuries lure investors repelled in the past by violence and corruption.