The JSE closed weaker on Monday, mainly on the back of weakness recorded across most blue-chip stocks.
The local bourse failed to take a leaf from the firmer close recorded in Chinese equities which saw the Shanghai Composite Index close 0.28% firmer, while the Hang Seng rose 0.97%. Stocks in Japan struggled which saw the Nikkei closing 0.22% weaker. Stocks traded mostly flat in Europe as they struggled to find a catalyst for direction. In the USA, market participants are waiting for results from Google parent, Alphabet which is expected to release results after the US markets’ close on Monday.
On the currency market, the US dollar was mildly firmer against a basket of major currencies. The rand traded mostly firmer despite this US dollar strength as it peaked at a session high of R14.30/$. At 17.00 CAT, it was trading 0.48% firmer at R14.31/$.
On the JSE, Naspers [JSE:NPN] came under pressure despite its associate Tencent Holdings closing 1.72% firmer at $HK390.60 on the Hang Seng. Naspers eventually closed 0.2% weaker at R3685.43. Platinum miners also struggled on the day which saw Anglo American Platinum [JSE:AMS] close amongst the day’s biggest losers after it lost 5.85% to close at R720.22, while Impala Platinum [JSE:IMP] weakened by 5.32% to close at R60.12. Gold miner AngloGold Ashanti [JSE:ANG] fell 4.17% to close at R172.00, while Harmony Gold [JSE:HAR] dropped 3.28% as it closed at R24.76. Other significant movers lower included Blue Label Telecoms [JSE:BLU] which lost 4.62% to close at R4.75, Fortress REIT [JSE:FFA] which fell 2.84% to R19.18, and Bidvest [JSE:BVT] which closed at R216.18 after dropping 1.74%.
Gains were fairly modest on the day with decent gains being recorded for listed property stocks. Rebosis Property Fund [JSE:REB] managed to gain 3.68% as it closed at R1.41, Delta Property added 5.49% to close at R1.92, and Intu Properties [JSE:ITU] gained 1.83% to close at R18.40. Rand hedge British American Tobacco [JSE:BTI] firmed by 1.14% to close at R554.83, while Mondi PLC [JSE:MNP] closed 0.67% higher at R317.00. Retailers also inched higher on the day which saw gains being recorded for Shoprite [JSE:SHP] which added 1.04% to close at R177.65, as well as Massmart [JSE:MSM] which closed 0.77% higher at R91.09.
The JSE All-Share index eventually closed 0.54% weaker while the JSE Top-40 index lost 0.52%. The Financials index barely closed firmer as it added 0.08%, while the Industrials and Resources lost 0.28% and 0.83% respectively.
At 17.00 CAT, Palladium had plummeted 6.61% to trade at $1368.75/Oz, Platinum was down 0.82% at $891.55/Oz, and Gold was 0.49% weaker at $1279.75/Oz.
Brent crude retreated over the weekend as market participants fretted over Donald Trump’s calls for OPEC to take measures to reduce oil prices. The commodity was trading 0.085 firmer at $71.72/barrel just after the JSE close.