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Local bourse closes softer as global markets remain tentative

Musa Makoni

The JSE closed softer on Friday on the back of broad-based weakness across most of the local bourse’s major indices.

Global equity markets struggled for direction as Asian markets traded mostly flat with the Shanghai Composite Index being the exception as it rallied 1.43%. In Europe, trading was also mixed as markets tried to comprehend the ongoing negotiations between the USA and China.

Locally, the rand retreated from its overnight highs as the US dollar inched up in anticipation of a better US jobs report for the month of January. The rand weakened to a session low of R13.37 against the greenback, before being recorded at R13.35/$ at 17.00 CAT.

On the JSE, Hudaco Industries traded under significant pressure as it eventually closed 8.28% weaker at R133.00, after the company reported a decline in earnings per share in its full-year results. Ascendis Health [JSE:ASC] also struggled as it shed 3.85% to end the day at R5.25, while Kap Industrial Holdings [JSE:KAP] lost 3.51% to close at R8.25. Telecoms provider, Telkom [JSE:TKG] slid 3.05% to close at R65.07, while Vodacom [JSE:VOD] was mildly softer as it shed 0.56% to R119.91. Naspers [JSE:NPN] closed 3.13% weaker at R2945.00, FirstRand [JSE:FSR] lost 1.28% to close at R68.50, and Mediclinic [JSE:MEI] closed at R54.66 after dropping 0.85%.

31 January-2

Sibanye Stillwater [JSE:SGL] was the standout from the day’s biggest gainers after the stock rallied 7.56% to close at R12.10. EOH Holdings [JSE:EOH] gained some traction as it added 4.24% to close at R27.81, while British American Tobacco [JSE:BTI] had a reprieve as it gained 1.96% to close at R475.00. Truworths [JSE:TRU] managed to post gains of 1.34% as it closed at R81.17, while MTN Group [JSE:MTN] closed 1.23% higher at R88.10. Richemont [JSE:CFR] managed to add another 1.15% as it closed at R91.85., while gold miner AngloGold Ashanti [JSE:ANG] firmed by 1.61% to R189.99.

The JSE Top-40 index closed the day 0.54% weaker, while the broader JSE All-Share index shed 0.38%. The Resources index managed to close firmer as it gained 0.45%. The Industrials and Financials indices shed 0.96% and 0.5% respectively.

At 17.00 CAT, Palladium was up 1.88% to trade at $1368.38/Oz, Platinum was 0.9% firmer at $829.42/Oz, and Gold was flat to trade at $1321.65/Oz.

Brent crude gained some momentum in the afternoon session afternoon trading mostly flat earlier. It was trading 1.38% firmer at $61.68/barrel just after the JSE close.

 At 17.00 CAT, Bitcoin was up 1.01% to trade at $3527.00/coin, while Ethereum had managed to add 0.86% to trade at $109.00/coin.