Bull and bear statues at the JSE. Picture: MICHAEL BRATT
Bull and bear statues at the JSE. Picture: MICHAEL BRATT

The JSE closed lower on Thursday, with miners faring worst, despite buoyant global markets and good news in the form of mining and manufacturing data.

Mining production contracted 2.6% year-on-year in May, better than the 3.3% consensus forecast. Manufacturing grew 2.3% in April, well ahead of expectations of a 0.6% contraction. The JSE brushed this off, however.

Taken together, today’s figures suggest that the contraction of SA’s economy slowed in the second quarter, said Capital Economics analysts.

The rand was firmer on the day, despite US data showing inflation in that country reached a seven-year high in June, of 2.9%.

Interest-rate sensitive shares received some support from a falling oil price, which edged below $74 a barrel, extending losses from Wednesday when Libya announced it was resuming oil exports.

The all share fell 0.67% to 56,849.4 points and the top 40 0.73%. Gold miners lost 1.53%, resources 1.45% and property stocks 0.83%. Platinums firmed 0.19%.

Diversified miner Anglo American gave up 1.57% to R291.46 and BHP 1.5% to R292.09.

Rand hedge Richemont fell 1.8% to R111.02.

Sasol slipped 1.92% to R508.

Steinhoff International jumped 27.43% to R2.88, following its announcement on Wednesday that a three-year debt standstill could be agreed to with creditors within a week.

Gold Brands plummeted 53.85% to 6c, having announced on Wednesday it was selling its Black Steer restaurant group.

The Dow opened higher, on track for its fifth consecutive session of gains, as the tense trading relationship between the US and China once again appeared to ease, reported Dow Jones Newswires.

Shortly after the JSE closed the Dow was up 0.67% to 24,867.55 points, while in Europe the FTSE 100 had firmed 0.73%, the CAC 40 0.72% and the DAX 30 0.43%.

At the same time, gold was up 0.42% to $1,247.25 an ounce and platinum 2.31% to $844.34. Brent crude had fallen 0.96% to $73.38 a barrel.