JOHANNESBURG - The South African rand was little changed on Friday, hovering around a five-month high ahead of S&P Global's review of the country's sovereign credit ratings.

At 1435 GMT, the rand traded at 18.1675 against the dollar , not far from its previous close of 18.1925.

The rand has rallied this week to its strongest levels in 2024, helped by an improvement in risk sentiment as bets grow that the U.S. Federal Reserve may cut interest rates in September.

S&P is scheduled to review South Africa's foreign and local currency ratings later on Friday. The rating agency in November affirmed the country's foreign currency rating at "BB-/B" and local currency rating at "BB/B" with a stable outlook.

On the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, the Top-40 index index was up about 0.2%. The yield on South Africa's benchmark 2030 government bond was up 0.5 basis points at 10.37%.

(Reporting by Bhargav Acharya; Editing by Alex Richardson and Sharon Singleton)