The JSE closed firmer on Thursday on the back of a charge led by the resources index, and all major indices on the local bourse traded firmer on the day.
This was despite a mixed picture in Asia where the Nikkei lost 1.37%, while the Hang Seng and Shanghai Composite Index added 0.84% and 1.62% respectively. Stocks in Europe and the USA traded mostly in the green as momentum picked up for stocks primarily on the back of a report that Donald Trump would announce oil production cuts which could help boost oil prices.
Investors will now shift their attention to Friday’s US jobs data for fresher clues on the extent of the impact of the disruption caused by the spread of the coronavirus.
The rand came under more pressure in today’s session as investors dumped emerging market currencies in search of the safety-haven of the greenback. The rand was trading 1.25% weaker at R18.06/$ at 17.00 CAT, after having reached a session low of R18.65/$.
On the JSE, the volatility in Nampak [JSE:NPK] continued as the share closed 2389% to close at R1.40, while Sasol [JSE:SOL] rocketed 21.52% to close at R41.00. Motus Holdings [JSE:MTH] found some reprieve in today’s session as it jumped 15.97% to close at R27.60, while Super Group [JSE:SPG] closed amongst the day’s biggest gainers after it surged 16.2% to close at R13.70.
Sibanye Stillwater ]JSE:SSW] advanced 11.25% to close at R22.95, while DRD Gold [JSE:DRD] managed to climb 12.66% to close at R10.59. Coal miner Exxaro Resources [JSE:EXX] posted gains of 9.65% to close at R 109.98, while Glencore [JSE:GLN] added 9.64% to close at R29.47. Significant gains were also recorded for BHP Group [JSE:BHP] which firmed 5.61% to close at R287.00, as well as British American Tobacco [JSE:BTI] which closed at R674.26 after gaining 4.8%. Libstar Holdings [JSE:LBR] stood out amongst the day’s biggest losers after it lost 6.58% to close at R6.25. African Rainbow Capital Investments [JSE:AIL] traded under pressure eventually closing 5.44% weaker at R3.30, while Alexander Forbes Group [JSE:AFH] dropped 2.5% to close at R3.90.
Some rand sensitives were dragged down by the weaker rand which saw declines being recorded for stocks such as Old Mutual [JSE:OMU] which lost 3.84% to close at R10.76, as well as Standard Bank [JSE:SBK] which fell 1.2% to close at R101.49. Massmart [JSE:MSM] dropped 2.02% to close at R27.20, while Shoprite [JSE:SHP] closed at R122.87 after losing 1.96%.
The JSE Top-40 index eventually closed 3.04% firmer while the broader JSE All-Share index also gained 3.04%. The Resources index rallied 5.19%, while the Industrials and Financials indices advanced 2.34% and 1.02% respectively.
At 17.00 CAT, Gold was up 1.1% at $1608.69/Oz, Platinum had risen 1.2% to trade at $729.71, while Palladium was 1.38% softer at $1608.69/Oz. Brent crude jumped on the news of the production cut report from Donald Trump. The commodity was trading 24.01% firmer at $30.68/barrel just after the JSE close.
*Musa Makoni is a trading specialist at Purple Group