JSE rises above 58‚000 points as Donald Trump comments weigh on the dollar

22 August 2018 - 19:15 By Karl Gernetzky
U.S. President Donald Trump.
U.S. President Donald Trump.
Image: Reuters

The JSE pushed to its best level in more than a month on Wednesday‚ boosted by a weak dollar‚ while global focus remained on economic and political issues in the US.

The dollar was again on the back foot‚ helping ensure broad-based gains on the local bourse. Banks and retailers were firmer‚ despite slightly higher-than-expected consumer inflation earlier. Some market focus was also on the minutes from the US Federal Reserve’s August policy meeting‚ due at about 8pm local time.

Trump aimed some pot shots recently at the Fed’s rate-hiking policy.

Focusing on the technical picture‚ the rand had scope to approach R14.20 to the dollar in the near term if the greenback continues to weaken‚ said FXTM analyst Lukman Otunuga.

Miners were also cheered by news that mineral resources minister Gwede Mantashe wants to withdraw the controversial bill to amend the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA).

The all share rose 1.64% to 58‚126 points and the top 40 1.83%. Platinums gained 2.67%‚ industrials 1.99% and general retailers 1.03%.

Local corporate news was negative‚ with the major results‚ from Bidcorp and Blue Label Telecoms‚ both disappointing the market. Blue Label Telecoms slumped 11.04% to R6.85‚ despite earlier reporting that net income jumped 28% to R1bn in the year to end-June. Analysts said the results were disappointing given its recent acquisition of a 45% stake in Cell C.

Bidcorp fell 2.19% to R290‚ despite earlier upping its final dividend for the year to end June 12% to R2.80. Headline earnings per share (HEPS) rose 9.1% to R128.26.

Long4Life rose 2.82% to R5.11. After the market close it said its proposed acquisition of footwear chain Rage is no longer on the cards.

Italtile gained 1.56% to R13.69‚ having earlier reported a 40% growth in revenue for the year to end-June‚ a performance boosted by its recent acquisition of Ceramic Industrial.

Naspers firmed 3.8% to R3‚430.

US stocks were under some pressure after events on Tuesday‚ when US President Donald Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen said he violated campaign-finance law‚ while in a separate matter‚ former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort was found guilty on eight charges including tax evasion.

Shortly after the JSE closed the Dow was flat at 25‚810.75 points‚ while in Europe the FTSE 100 was up 0.2% and the CAC 40 0.23%.

At the same time‚ platinums had fallen 0.22% to $793.30 an ounce and gold 0.12% to $1‚194.69. Brent crude was 1.8% higher at $74.09 a barrel.

- BusinessLIVE