South African futures were marginally firmer on Tuesday after the JSE all share closed flat on weaker banks and despite stronger food and drug retailers.

Market sentiment was cautious ahead of Wednesday’s budget speech by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

The JSE closed 0.05% higher at 52,586.60 points and the blue-chip top 40 added 0.11%. Food and drug retailers gained 1.16% while banks lost 1.13%. Platinums added 0.52% and resources 0.46%. The gold index gave up 0.69% and financials 0.23%.

The bullish bias in US markets continued with the Dow up 0.54% in late-morning trade there. European markets were mixed in the late afternoon with the FTSE 100 having shed 0.16% while Germany’s Dax was up 0.97%.

The rand was weaker at R13.1632 to the dollar from R13.0452 in early evening trade.

Brent crude was 0.86% higher at $56.60 a barrel.

At 5.45pm, the local near-dated top-40 Alsi futures index had gained 0.17% to 45,709 points with 20,997 contracts traded from Monday’s 17,847.

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