Johannesburg – The JSE rallied to close at a new high on Wednesday‚ with platinums and resources providing a boost. Hopes that the US Federal Reserve could announce new stimulus measures tonight helped to buoy both local and global market sentiment.
“There is optimism about the Federal Open Market Committee in the US tonight announcing that they are keeping monetary stimulus in place and market participants believe that a solution to the fiscal cliff issue will be found in time‚” said Gary Booysen‚ trader at Vunani Private Clients.
At 17:00‚ the All Share [JSE:J203] index was up 0.59% to 38 763.64 points‚ with the Top 40 - (Tradeable) [JSE:J200] index nudging up 0.51% to 34 415.32 points.
Leading European markets were trading modestly firmer‚ with the UK’s FTSE 100 gaining 0.17% by 17:08 local time‚ while the Dow Jones Industrial index was 0.17% firmer at 13 271.26 points.
“We had a heavy data day today starting off with CPI out in Germany‚ in line with expectations‚ then inflation out of France that was a little lower than expected. We had good data out of Europe and the US and markets seem to be ignoring the fiscal cliff‚” said Booysen.
“There is general optimism about the FOMC meeting later today in the US and optimism that stocks will rise due to the higher inflation that would be caused by further monetary stimulus‚” he added.
Barclays Bank said in its daily global update that the US central bank is today expected to announce a further asset purchase programme to replace Operation Twist‚ which expires at the end of this year.
“Despite the positive November US employment report‚ we expect the Fed to convert its purchases of long-term Treasury securities under the maturity extension programme into open-ended purchases when it meets later on Wednesday‚” the bank said.