Johannesburg - The JSE share market hovered along the flat line at noon on Wednesday‚ in cautious trade ahead of the Greek elections at the weekend‚ which could determine the country's future in the eurozone.
European markets also slipped into negative territory after opening mildly positive‚ while Asian shares finished mostly higher.
At 12:01 local time‚ the JSE All Share [JSE:J203]
index slipped 0.04% to 33 840.84 points‚ with resources flat (-0.01%)‚ while gold counters shed 0.60% and platinums gained 0.63%.
Financials were also flat (-0.07%)‚ as were banking stocks (-0.12%) and industrials (-0.05%).
The rand was trading at 8.39 to the US dollar‚ from 8.41 at the JSE's close on Tuesday‚ while gold was quoted at $1 612.79 a troy ounce from $1 610.00/oz at the JSE's previous close and platinum was at $1 454.70/oz‚ from $1 455.50/oz in the previous session.
“It’s a wait-and-see approach at this stage‚” said Drikus Combrinck‚ portfolio manager at PSG Konsult.
”Markets have largely priced in the Greek exit from the euro region‚” he said. “We could‚ however‚ see a short-term rally if the election results favour the pro-austerity parties.”
Francois du Plessis‚ director at Vega Asset Management‚ said: “The guys are scared to go short pending the outcome of the Greek elections over the weekend. I think the markets will remain choppy until we have some sort of certainty about that country.”
In Europe‚ London’s FTSE slipped 0.12% to 5 467.17 points at noon local time.
In Asia‚ Japan's Nikkei gained 0.60% and the Hang Seng index lifted 0.82%.
Hope for action by US and European policy makers to help the global economy offset worries ahead of Greek elections‚ Dow Jones Newswires reported.