JSE follows some Asian and European markets lower

20 April 2016 - 12:42 By Madeleine Van Niekerk
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The JSE was softer on Wednesday morning as Asian markets delivered a mixed performance and European markets retreated after good global runs on Tuesday.

Image: Siphiwe Sibeko/Reuters via The Conversation

The Japanese Nikkei 225 lifted 0.19%‚ the Hong Kong Hang Seng index gave back 1.24%‚ and the Chinese Shanghai Composite was down 2.31%‚ despite a firmer close on Wall Street overnight‚ up 0.27%.

At 9.45am‚ the all share was down 0.46% at 53‚137 points and the blue-chip top 40 had given back 0.55%.

Platinums led the gainers‚ up 1.70%‚ followed by gold miners‚ adding 1.50% despite softer commodity prices. Banks led the decliners‚ down 1.60%.

Momentum SP Reid Securities said a slightly inconsistent performance with lack of outright momentum and direction is indicated for the JSE at the commencement of Wednesday’s session.

The inconsistent Asian performance will serve as a modest drag‚ but the technical improvement in industrial and ferrous metals continues to support resource counters‚ despite the firmer rand‚ the stockbrokerage said.

On the international front‚ a slightly less vibrant commencement to trade in the US is suggested for Wednesday’s session‚ but ultimately the early tone will largely hinge upon earnings data coming to the market‚ Momentum SP Reid Securities said.

Meanwhile‚ the lack of a resolution on global crude oil production has not yet exhibited a decisive trend influence on markets‚ even though slightly higher levels of intraday volatility were witnessed for a number of sessions‚ the stockbrokerage said.

Among individual shares on the JSE‚ Anglo American (AGL) gained 3.63% to R156.60 and BHP Billiton (BIL) added 2.23% to R201.55.

BHP Billiton (BIL) has cut back on mining of all its major commodities except metallurgical coal‚ its production report for the March quarter showed on Wednesday.

BHP reduced iron ore output to 171-million tonnes‚ a 10% reduction from the matching quarter last year. It also cut its full-year forecast for iron ore output from its Australian mines by 4% — following rival Rio Tinto’s similar move a day earlier — as a result of a cyclone in January and maintenance work on its railway.

Sasol (SOL) lifted 0.14% to R448.36‚ despite the price of Brent crude down 2.18% at $43.08 a barrel in morning trade.

In the platinum sector‚ Lonmin (LON) was up 1.13% at R35.89 and Impala (IMP) rose 3.31% to R50.00. Gold counter Harmony (HAR) gained 3.54% to R51.51.

Standard Bank (SBK) was down 2.25% at R126.19.

- TMG Digital/BDlive

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