JSE moves up slightly as platinums jump
The market is seeking direction amid a volatile Dow and mixed Asian markers as Naspers continues to experience headwinds
After hitting an annual low on Monday, the JSE all share was marginally up at the opening on Tuesday following volatile trade on the Dow and mixed performances from Asian markets.
There was still no clarity on the position of finance minister Nhlanhla Nene following his request to President Cyril Ramaphosa to relieve him of his duties. The president has not yet indicated when he will make his decision, with the medium-term budget policy statement set to be delivered in two weeks' time.
Platinum stocks were sharply up, despite a flat metal price and a steady rand of about R14.87 to the dollar.
The platinum sector has been lagging behind other miners, still about 3% down for the year, while the resources 10 index of mainly global miners has risen 21.2%.
Anglo American Platinum has been the star performer among platinum stocks, having gained 36% in 2018. By contrast, Impala Platinum and Lonmin have been the laggards.
The Dow closed 0.15% up on Monday. The Nikkei 225 lost 1.32% and the Hang Seng 0.04%, but the Shanghai Composite recovered 0.17%.
Chinese internet company Tencent showed little sign of bouncing back from 12-month lows in Hong Kong trade, with Naspers, which owns a third of Tencent, edging lower for the sixth successive session, extending losses in 2018 to 16.8%.
Naspers was 0.52% lower at R2,869.91.
At 9.45am the all share was 0.11% firmer at 54,277.40 points and the top 40 rose 0.02%. Platinums were up 3.55%, the gold index 2.81% and resources 1.18%. General retailers lost 0.44%, industrials 0.31%, food and drug retailers 0.27% and financials 0.22%.
Sasol was 0.58% to R549.22 as Brent crude resumed its upward momentum, rising 0.65% to $84.37 a barrel.
British American Tobacco slipped 1.71% to R652.36.
Anglo American Platinum was up 4.44% to R483.56, Impala Platinum 3.09% to R27.32 and Lonmin 4.28% to R9.50.
Among financials MMI Holdings lost 0.48% to R16.75 with the share now firmly in bear territory, having lost 20.6% in 2018.
Steinhoff lost 1.22% to R2.42.
Intu Properties rose 1.39% to R35.64 with the property group confirming it is a takeover target.
Educational group Curro Holdings was 2.46% lower at R25.40.