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Choppy JSE cuts gains, ends weaker

May 15 2012 18:45 I-Net Bridge

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Johannesburg - The JSE reversed earlier gains to finish the session lower on Tuesday, as the last-ditch attempt to form a coalition government in Greece ended in failure, hitting global market sentiment.

At 17:00 local time, the JSE All Share [JSE:J203] index was down 0.14% to 33 486.08 points, with gold miners tumbling 2.54%, platinum miners dropping 1.10% and resources shedding 0.72%.

Financials were down 0.39%, banking stocks were off 0.64%, while industrials gained 0.37%.

The rand slid to 8.27 to the US dollar, from 8.17 at JSE's close on Monday. Gold was quoted at $1 552.41 a troy ounce from $1 562.62/oz at the JSE's previous close, while platinum was at $1 445/oz, from $1 449.50/oz at the previous session.

"The collapse of Greek coalition talks will prolong uncertainty in the financial markets which until recently had been driven by liquidity injection from the central banks, not so much from economic fundamentals," said Rudi van der Merwe, market analyst Standard Bank Stockbroking.

US stocks edged higher on Tuesday as Greece's failure to form a new government tempered optimism about better-than-expected economic output in the eurozone, Dow Newswires reported.

Greece's president said the country would hold new elections, raising concerns that the country might exit the single-currency block.

The news tempered upbeat sentiment that followed a preliminary reading showing the eurozone's gross domestic product was flat, topping economists' expectations for a slight contraction. Germany's economy expanded 0.5% compared with expectations of 0.1% growth, bolstering the economic area. European markets also retreated.

Meanwhile, readings on the US economy met or beat expectations.
jse  |  markets  |  stocks

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