Cape Town – All major JSE sectors closed lower on Tuesday, after an extended Easter trading. Diversified mining stocks were under pressure as commodity prices fell as expectations of international growth cooled off due to the delayed spending plans of US President Donald Trump.
Globally, investors remain concerned amid heightened geopolitical risks, reducing the demand for equity investments in favour of safe-haven assets such as gold. Gold rallied 0.5% to $1290/Oz as political tensions between the US and North Korea escalated over the weekend, after North Korea attempted to test a long-distance ballistic missile on Sunday; the missile exploded on launch. The failed missile attempt prompted US Vice President Mike Pence to remark that “the era of strategic patience” with North Korea “is over”.
The rand remained flat against the dollar during the trading day, closing at R13.30 to the greenback. The JSE blue-chip Top 40 closed 1.65% lower, followed by the broader All Share Index closing 1.57% lower. Overall, the major market sectors saw red with the Resources Index dropping 2.95%, the Industrial Index down 1.17%, and the Financial Index 0.78% softer.