JOHANNESBURG: South African government bonds rose on Thursday after higher-than-expected inflation data in the previous session with trading expected to be thin ahead of the Treasury's release of the medium-term budget later in the day.
The yield on the benchmark 3-year bond and the longer dated 14 year paper were both 2 basis points lower at 5.44 and 7.685 percent respectively.
By 0651 GMT, the rand was trading at 8.73 to the dollar, 0.6 percent firmer than Wednesday's New York close of 8.7810.
"The long end of the yield curve will be supported. There may be a little bit of curve flattening," said Michael Grobler, a fixed income analyst at Afrifocus Securities.
"As long as the rand stays below 8.82, there's going to be demand for the long end of our yield curve."
Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan faces the hard task of balancing demands, in his mid-term budget speech, for increased social spending from a restive population while reassuring investors and ratings agencies he is committed to reining in the budget deficit.
The minister will deliver the medium-term budget at 1200 GMT.
South Africa's headline consumer inflation accelerated to 5.5 percent year-on-year in September from 5 percent in August, government data said on Wednesday.