Picture: ISTOCK
Picture: ISTOCK

The JSE pushed higher on Wednesday, tracking buoyant global markets, and following a glimmer of hope of better-than-expected local economic growth for the third quarter.

The day started auspiciously, with Chinese markets closing at multi-month highs, after Chinese President Xi Jinping, on Wednesday, urged the government to play a greater role in the economy.

Analysts said positive sentiment in global markets was likely to continue for the next few weeks, amid signs of positive third-quarter corporate results. At the close of the JSE, both the Dow and the German DAX had reached record highs.

Locally, upbeat retail sales data helped lift that sector, with the JSE subsequently reversing earlier losses.

Retail trade sales rose by a significant 5.5% year on year in August, beating a Trading Economics forecast of 2%. This was the best performance since 2013, supporting the view that SA’s economic growth this year would surprise to the upside, said Capital Economics analysts.

The all share closed 0.47% higher at 58‚152.40 points and the blue-chip top 40 added 0.46%. Banks gained 0.93%‚ general retailers 0.87%‚ financials 0.81%‚ food and drug retailers 0.61%‚ industrials 0.59% and property 0.38%. Resources lost 0.23% and the gold index 0.09%.

Global diversified miner Anglo American shed 1.74% to R255.67.

Richemont was up 1.8% to R123.20. It said on Tuesday it expected a significant increase in first-half earnings‚ with operating profit surging 45%‚ beating analyst’s forecasts.

Remgro dropped 1.72% to R223.50.

Nedbank gained 1.93% to R219.52 and Standard Bank 1.18% to R171.

Discovery added 2.12% to R146.85.

Retailer Truworths rebounded 3.17% to R78.14 and Massmart 1.48% to R115.76.

In the property sector, Capital & Counties jumped 4.35% to R48.48‚ MAS Real Estate 2.14% to R30.50 and Greenbay Properties 3.32% to R2.49.

Spur lost 1.82% to R27.54, but Taste Holdings rebounded 2.53% to 81c.

Mondi Plc gained 1.93% to R341.99.

At 5.54pm, gold had lost 0.33% to $1‚280.20 an ounce and platinum 1.38% to $921.78.

At the same time, the Dow was up 0.61%‚ while in Europe‚ the CAC 40 had gained 0.42% and the DAX 30 0.37%.

The top-40 Alsi futures index added 0.4% at 52‚384 points. The number of contracts traded was 16‚382 from Tuesday’s 16‚492.

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