JSE a tad higher‚ platinums weigh

2012-07-19 10:26

Johannesburg - The JSE was a touch higher at the open on Thursday‚ as the platinum sector weighed on the all-share index following Anglo Platinum’s (AMS) downbeat trading update.

At 09:25 local time‚ the JSE All Share [JSE:J203] index inched up 0.09% to 34‚064.29 points‚ with resources slipping 0.10%‚ platinum shares shedding 0.54% and gold counters dipping 0.11%.

Financials edged up 0.09%‚ with banking stocks and industrials both 0.22% in the black.

The rand was firmer at R8.12 to the US dollar‚ from R8.16 at the JSE’s close on Wednesday‚ while gold changed hands at $1 583.22 a troy ounce from $1 576.15/oz at the JSE’s previous close and platinum was quoted at $1 418/oz‚ from $1 411.70/oz previously.

“Market players‚ particularly in the banking and retail space‚ will watch closely the Reserve Bank’s decision on interest rates‚” said Viv Govender‚ analyst at Vunani Private Clients. “On the global level‚ the US corporate earnings picture looks reasonably well so far.”

Leading European share markets opened slightly higher‚ with London’s FTSE 100 up 0.09%.

Risk assets are finding support after US Federal Reserve chairperson Ben Bernanke reiterated to Congress on Wednesday that the Fed stood ready to take necessary measures to boost the US economy‚ if and when necessary. Ongoing hope of further stimulus in China had also helped sentiment‚ Dow Jones Newswires reported.

In Asia‚ stock markets were higher‚ with Japan’s Nikkei average ending the session up 0.79%‚ while the Hang Seng index was up 1.57% by 09:25 SA time.