The rand is climbing as thousands of South Africans gather to protest against the president

The South African rand is climbing after several thousand people rallied in Pretoria, South Africa, protesting against President Jacob Zuma.

The currency is higher by 0.6% at 13.7341 per dollar as of 7:48 a.m. ET.

Wednesday’s rally against Zuma was the second major protest in less than a week.

Separately, retail sales in South Africa fell by 1.7% year-over-year in February, better than expectations of a 1.8% drop, and an improvement from the prior month’s 2.3% drop.

As for the rest of the world, here’s the scoreboard as of 7:57 a.m. ET:

  • The British pound is little changed at 1.2496 against the dollar as data show that wage growth is slowing in the UK. Average weekly earnings, excluding bonuses, rose 2.2% in the three months up to February, the lowest reading since the immediate aftermath of the Brexit referendum in June.
  • The euro is little changed at 1.0602 against the dollar. Spanish CPI rose by 2.3% year-over-year in March, in line with expectations, and steady from the prior month’s reading.
  • The US dollar index is little changed at 100.73 ahead of a quiet data day. Import and export prices will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET.
  • The Russian ruble is down by 0.3% at 57.0644 per dollar, while Brent crude oil, the international benchmark, is up by 0.5% at $US56.51 per barrel.
  • The Korean won closed up by 0.5% at 1,140.24 per dollar after declining for six consecutive sessions.
  • The Japanese yen is little changed at 109.64 per dollar.

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