Johannesburg - The JSE finished weaker for the second straight session on Friday‚ with commodity shares hard hit‚ amid global economic growth concerns.
At 17:00 local time‚ the JSE All Share [JSE:J203]
index was down 1.20% to 34 188.87 points‚ with resources sliding 2.81%‚ gold shares dropping 3.76% and platinum counters tumbling 3.81%.
Financials were flat (-0.04%)‚ banking stocks inched up 0.14% and industrials lost 1.02%.
The rand weakened to 8.42 to the US dollar‚ from 8.31 at the JSE's close on Thursday‚ while gold was quoted at $1 563.75 a troy ounce from $1 582.52/oz at the JSE's previous close and platinum was at $1 432.50/oz‚ from $1 451.20/oz previously.
“Global equities‚ including the JSE‚ were pushed up in anticipation of the possibility of an aggressive stimulus package from the US Federal Reserve and‚ as we all now know‚ that didn’t happen. The fundamental economic data this week has not been looking good either‚ triggering some short term profit taking‚” said Ian Cruickshanks‚ market watcher at Nedbank Capital.
But US stocks opened higher on Friday in the wake of Thursday's sharp losses‚ led by shares of financial firms as investors shrugged off a much-anticipated round of bank downgrades by Moody's Investors Service‚ Dow Jones Newswires reported.
Moody's Investors Service lowered the credit ratings of more than a dozen large banks world-wide‚ citing significant exposure to the volatility and risk of large losses from capital markets activities. Investors had been bracing for downgrades since Moody's said in February that it was reviewing more than 100 global banks.
At 17:20 local time‚ the Dow Jones was up 0.51 points.
In Europe‚ London’s FTSE was down 0.84% in late trade.