Johannesburg – The local bourse yet again closed at an all-time high on Wednesday with the market rallying above the 39‚000 point level for the first time ever‚ buoyed by positive global sentiment.
A risk-on trade environment prevailed throughout the day‚ as hopes grew for a US fiscal deal and for further monetary stimulus from the Bank of Japan. Locally platinum and banking counters boosted the JSE.
At 5:00‚ the All Share [JSE:J203] index was up 0.73% to 39‚164.84 points‚ with the Top 40 - (Tradeable) [JSE:J200] index gaining 0.75% to 34‚724.82 points. Platinums and banks gained 2.48% and 1.24% respectively‚ and financials grew by 1.19%.
Major European stock markets were higher in late trade‚ due to strong German economic data and an upgrade of Greek debt. The UK’s FTSE 100 was 0.67% firmer at 4:46 local time.
On the local front positive sentiment drove SA markets higher with China expecting economic growth of 7.7% for the fourth quarter‚ leading to local commodity buying from China‚ a trader said.
“There was also a huge push towards futures close-out that pushed the JSE higher. Our retailers and industrials are at all-time highs already and the all share index was pushed up by a recovery in resources‚” he said.
Meanwhile US stocks opened flat (0.04%) on Wednesday‚ after two days of strong gains following positive results from technology player Oracle and package-delivery giant FedEx and a pair of readings on housing.
Data on new residential construction showed a contraction in November after surging the previous two months‚ decreasing 3.0% from October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 861‚000‚ just below expectations‚ Dow Jones Newswires reported.
The previous month's reading also was revised downward. However new building permits‚ an indication of future construction‚ rose by 3.6% to an annualised level of 899‚000 in November‚ above economists' estimates.
Meanwhile all eyes are on the fiscal cliff debate‚ with the US Democrats and Republicans offering concessions on the fiscal cliff‚ with budget negotiations between President Barack Obama and Republican house speaker John Boehner that have made significant progress.
Boehner agreed to the idea of raising tax rates on high income earning Americans‚ while President Obama offered a concession that he could accept tax increases for households earning $400 000 or more per year‚ and not increase taxes for those that earn $250 000 per year as he said previously.
On the JSE Northam Platinum (NHM) surged 7.78% to R38.10 and Aquarius (AQP) rallied 11.60% to R7.31.
ArcelorMittal (ACL) advanced 4.35% to R36 and Exxaro (EXX) gained 3.28% to R166.99.
Banking counters Nedbank (NED) added 2.17% to R188 and Investec Ltd (INL) gained 3.02% to R58.05. Insurer Old Mutual PLC (OML) lifted 2.64% to R24.87 and rival Sanlam (SLM) picked up 3.37% to R44.51.
In the construction sector PPC (PPC) continued its recent good run to add 3.77% to R35.49‚ while Basil Read Holdings (BSR) gave up 2.4% to R10.59.
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