South Africa's rand was steady in early trade on Thursday ahead of monthly manufacturing figures which could provide clues about the state of the economy.

At 0620 GMT, the rand traded at 18.5750 against the U.S. dollar, not far from its previous close of 18.5825.

The dollar index was up about 0.08% against a basket of currencies, holding firm before next week's U.S. inflation data which will be the next major market focus.

Statistics South Africa will release manufacturing data for March at 1100 GMT. Output is expected to rise 0.4% year-on-year compared to 4.1% the previous month, according to economists polled by Reuters.

South Africa's benchmark 2030 government bond was flat in early deals, with the yield at 10.515%. (Reporting by Nellie Peyton; Editing by Christopher Cushing)