The JSE closed firmer on Monday mainly on the back of improved sentiment in European automotive stocks which saw European equities inch higher.
Stocks in Europe were buoyed following a report that China was considering cutting taxes on car purchases by more than half, to boost demand for the automobile sector which has been adversely affected by the trade war. In Asia, markets were mixed as the Shanghai Composite Index dropped 3.05% while the Nikkei shed 0.16%. The Hang Seng managed to eke out gains of 0.38%.
On the JSE, retailers and financials led gains mainly on the back of the firmer rand. Truworths [JSE:TRU] rallied to R82.75 after gaining 6.04%, while The Foschini Group [JSE:TFG] managed to post gains of 5.25% to close at R163.50. ABSA Group [JSE:ABG] topped the bankers as it climbed 4.83% to end the day at R150.83, FirstRand [JSE:FSR] gained 4.01% to R64.21, and Nedbank [JSE:NED] closed 4.1% higher at R245.20.
Coronation [JSE:CML] was amongst the day’s top gainers after closed 8.02% firmer at R48.23 per share. Astral Foods [JSE:ARL] closed the day up 6.01% at R210.42, while RCL Foods [JSE:RCL] managed to rise to R16.10 after adding 3.94%. Kumba Iron Ore [JSE:KIO] gained 4.48% to close at R288.30, while Glencore [JSE:GLN] closed at R57.90 after picking up 3.47%.
Gold miners traded mostly softer as the underlying gold metal price retreated from Friday’s highs. Sibanye Stillwater [JSE:SGL] fell by 5.95% to close at R10.12, Gold Fields [JSE:GFI] lost 4.77% to end the day at R39.75, and Harmony Gold [JSE:HAR] dropped 3.76% to close at R28.65. On the blue-chip index Naspers [JSE:NPN] fell by another 3.98% to close at R2457.23 as its Hong Kong listed associate continues to trade weaker.
The JSE All-Share index closed the day up 0.95% whilst the JSE Top-40 index managed to add 1.03%. The Industrials index came under pressure as it lost 0.29%, however the Resources and Financials indices gained 2.17% and 2.87% respectively.
The rand traded mostly firmer against the US dollar as it peaked at a session high of R14.41/$. This was despite the US dollar advancing against a basket of major currencies. At 17.00 CAT, the rand was trading at R14.51/$.
Brent crude was trading softer on the day as it slipped to a session low of $76.81/barrel, before rebounding to trade at $76.99/barrel just after the JSE close.
At 17.00 CAT, Gold was down 0.21% to trade at $1230.61/Oz, Palladium was up 0.72% to fetch $1113.60/Oz and Platinum was 0.7% firmer at $838.80/Oz.
Bitcoin had lost 2.09% to trade at $6364.10/coin, and Ethereum was down 3.64% at $198.03/coin.