Picture: JSE
Picture: JSE

The JSE was hardly changed on Friday on mixed Asian markets after China’s export data disappointed, falling unexpectedly in March, pulling local market heavyweight Naspers down.

Mining stocks were higher at the opening as the aluminium spot price rocketed, offset by weaker copper and zinc prices. The gold price rose 0.35% to $1.339.50/oz, supporting local gold shares as the rand traded slightly above R12/$.

Chinese internet company Tencent, of which Naspers owns 31.2%, fell in Hong Kong Trade. Naspers lost ground in response, with added pressure coming from the news that Naspers could raise nearly R4bn by selling its 16.6% stake in Indian e-commerce player Flipkart to Walmart.

Reducing its stake in Flipkart could further increase the sizeable discount with Tencent in Naspers’s present market cap, which management previously had stated it wanted to narrow.

The Nikkei 225 added 0.55% but the Shanghai Composite was down 0.66% and the Hang Seng fell 0.12%.

The Dow closed 1.21% higher at 24,483.05 points as Syria jitters eased and strong earnings pleased investors. Blackrock (up 1.5%) and Delta Air Lines (up 2.9%) reported solid results. JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup and Wells Fargo & Co will report results later today.

At 9.52am the all share was a marginal 0.06% lower at 56,446.50 points and the top 40 was unchanged. Resources rose 1.8% and the gold index 0.92%. Banks shed 0.78%, property 0.61%, industrials 0.54%, and food and drug retailers 0.53%.

Anglo American jumped 3.03% to R290.62.

Gold Fields rose 2.22% to R46.54 and Sibanye Stillwater 1.11% to R10.95.

FirstRand dropped 1.51% to R65.94.

Steinhoff was under selling pressure again, shedding 3.27% to R2.37. Star lost 0.77% to R19.25.

Group Five rocketed 34.5% to R5.55 after reporting an interim loss of R727.3m in the latest half-year period.

Resilient lost 1.49% to R63.29.

Hammerson tumbled 11.15% to R78.61 after rejecting French group Klépierre’s revised and higher takeover bid.

Naspers held up marginally above the R3,000 level, but was down 1.31% to R3,029.85.