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South Africa Raises Interest Rates to Counter Plunging Rand

South Africa’s central bank ramped up its policy tightening by raising the benchmark rate by half a percentage point, worried that inflation pressures from a weaker rand will spread more broadly in the economy.

The repurchase rate was increased to 6.75 percent, Governor Lesetja Kganyagosaid in a televised speech Thursday in the capital, Pretoria. That was in line with the forecasts of 17 of the 26 economists surveyed by Bloomberg. Six had predicted a 25 basis-point increase.