South Africa's rand fell nearly 3% to the dollar on Thursday, as the political turmoil in the United States forced investors to flee riskier emerging currencies into safe-haven assets.
Most emerging market currencies fell as uncertainty mounted over US President Donald Trump's future following reports that he tried to interfere with a federal investigation.
The rand has been dragged from its three-week highs touched earlier this week, with investors favouring safer assets such as gold, used as an alternative investment during times of political and financial uncertainty.
The rand extended its losses against the dollar to nearly 3% after an exclusive Reuters report detailing interactions between major players in Trump's campaign and Russian officials.
The currency was traded at 13.5200 per dollar by 1020 GMT, 2.42% weaker from its New York close on Wednesday and far off its three-weeks high of 13.0400 hit on Tuesday.
"The major fear of the markets at this stage is that the turmoil in the Trump administration will delay the much-hoped for and little-seen stimulus," Rand Merchant Bank currency strategist John Cairns said.
Pressure on the White House has intensified after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, who had been leading a federal probe into possible collusion between Trump's 2016 campaign team and Russia.
South African government bonds also weakened, with yield for the benchmark government bond due in 2026 rising 13.5 basis points to 8.82%.
On the bourse, the Top-40 index was down 0.4%, while the broader All-share rose 0.2%.
The bourse was buoyed by Steinhoff International, up 2.7% after announcing its plan late on Wednesday to spin off its African retail assets and list them separately on the Johannesburg Securities Exchange.