Picture: FINANCIAL MAIL

THE rand strengthened slightly on Thursday afternoon after global news boosted optimism.

"The Fed’s decision to extend the current round of quantitative easing and the EU deciding to give the ECB authority over banks in the area has boosted global sentiment," said Viv Govender, a markets analyst from Vunani Capital.

At 3.33pm‚ the rand was bid at R8.6485 to the dollar from Wednesday’s close of R8.6540. The local currency was bid at R11.3013 to the euro from its previous close of R11.3018 and at R13.9516 against sterling from R13.9545 before.

The euro was bid at $1.3068 from Wednesday’s close of $1.3065.