In a nearly hour-long televised address, Jacob Zuma - the beleaguered president of South Africa who was facing a coup by his own party, the African National Congress - announced he is resigning, putting an end to the debate whether he will comply with yesterday's recall vote which effectively removed him from power.
- ZUMA RESIGNS AS SOUTH AFRICA PRESIDENT WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT
- ZUMA SAYS HE DISAGREES WITH DECISION OF ANC LEADERSHIP
- ZUMA THANKS MEMBERS OF CABINET, MINISTERS, GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS
USDZAR ticked higher as President Zuma first addressed the nation, after early comments suggested that he would go forward with Thursday's confidence vote indicating that he would fight the decision to remove him. However, his resignation announcement should put an end to any speculation over his fate, and also clear the path for the pro-business Cyril Ramaphosa to replace Zuma.
It also sent the USDZAR tumbling, and the rand hit the strongest level against the dollar since March 2015, although it has since pared some of its gains as there are no more immediate upside catalysts.