The JSE lost ground on Friday, with dealers opting to book profits on recent high-flying stocks.

The all share was off 0.17% to 60,821.9 points at lunchtime, lagging behind global equity markets. Retailers and banks, in particular, had a stellar week, which rendered them vulnerable to profit-taking in the short term.

Resources and other big rand-hedge shares broadly lagged behind their local counterparts this week, held back by a stronger rand environment.

The election of Cyril Ramaphosa as the new head of the ANC has increased perceptions that the local economy could be on the verge of turning a corner, though economists have cautioned that a lot more still needs to be done to get the economy on a sound and sustainable footing.

Europe’s leading markets were higher at midday, following their counterparts in Asia, where Hong Kong’s Hang Seng booked another record close, with a gain of 0.41%.

By midday BHP was up 1.38% to R273.30, while AngloGold Ashanti had shed 1.82% to R132.50 and Gold Fields 3.08% to R51.55.

FirstRand gave up 1.89% to R64.85 and Sanlam 1.88% to R88.53.

Scandal-hit Steinhoff International rose 14.33% to R7.90, after saying late on Thursday that it expected to be able pay interest on its debt.

TFG lost 2.22% to R185.30 and Spar 1.73% to R203.01.

Listed property stocks continue to be volatile, with Redefine Properties losing 2.36% to R10.74 and Hyprop Investments 2.08% to R111.63.