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JSE inches higher after slow start

May 07 2018 19:00

JohannesburgThe JSE recorded a firmer close on Monday after a relatively lukewarm trading session where the index lacked significant momentum.

There was no catalyst for big swings in today’s trading session as markets seemed to have had a muted response to Friday’s jobs data out of the USA.

The major concern in the financial markets remains the possibility of deteriorating relations between the USA and Iran, which has sent Brent crude to new three-year highs.

On the local bourse gains were relatively modest as Assore [JSE:ASR] and Metair [JSE:MTA] ended among the day’s biggest gainers, after recording gains of 4.84% and 4.65% respectively.

Coal miner Exxaro [JSE:EXX] added 4.48% to close at R116.50 per share, while Datatec [JSE:DTC] managed to add 3.57% to close at R23.50 per share.

Gains were also capped on the blue-chip index as its biggest gainer, Capitec Holdings [JSE:CPI], recorded gains of 2.59% to close at R869.99 per share.

Nedbank [JSE:NED] and Old Mutual [JSE:OML] managed to add 1.94% and 1.5% respectively, while MTN [JSE:MTN] gained 1.83%. Retailers Truworths [JSE:TRU] and Mr Price [JSE:MRP] inched up 0.79% and 1.57% respectively, while index heavyweight BHP Billiton [JSE:BIL] climbed 0.84%.

The blue-chip index had modest losses among its constituents, as AngloGold Ashanti [JSE:ANG] and Reinet [JSE:RNI] lost 2.24 and 0.52% respectively, to end among that index’s biggest losers.

Aspen [JSE:APN] also came under some pressure to end the day down 1.32%, while Spar Group [JSE:SPP] and Woolworths [JSE:WHL] shed 0.68% and 0.86% respectively.

Losses were more significant on the broader index as Brait [JSE:BAT] lost 7.91% to close at R39.25 per share, while Sibanye-Stillwater slid by 7.69% to close at R9.97 per share.

Platinum miners Lonmin [JSE:LON] and Impala Platinum [JSE:IMP] lost 8.64% and 3.21% respectively, while food processing stocks Pioneer Foods [JSE:PNR] and Famous Brands [JSE:FBR] lost 3.98% and 1.43% respectively.

The JSE All-Share Index eventually closed 0.40% firmer, while the JSE Top-40 Index inched up 0.54%. Moderate gains were recorded across all the major indices, which saw the Resources Index gain 0.56% while the Financials and Resources Indices gained 0.56% and 0.72% respectively.

The rand was trading firmer today compared to Friday's close on the JSE. The local currency peaked at a session high of R12.48/$ before retracing to trade at $12.58/$ at 17.00 CAT.

Gold swung between gains and losses to eventually trade flat by the time the JSE closed. The precious metal slid to a session low of $1310.04 per ounce earlier on, before rebounding to trade at $1313.77/oz at 17.00 CAT.

Platinum and palladium followed a somewhat similar price action and at 17.00 CAT they were trading at $913.65/oz and $977.42/oz respectively.

Brent crude reached a new three-year high of $76.00 per barrel as it was ignited by the current geopolitical tensions surrounding Iran and the USA.

The commodity retraced marginally to trade at $75.91/barrel just after the JSE close.

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equities  |  jse  |  markets
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