Picture: REUTERS
Picture: REUTERS

Asian markets started fretting on Tuesday morning about the details of the proposed truce in the trade war between the US and China.

Tencent was down 0.68% to HK$322.60, indicating its largest shareholder, Naspers, will give up some of Monday’s 4.54% rise to R2,888.51.

Oil continued its rally, indicating Sasol may add to Monday’s 6.82% rise to R434 and Standard Bank’s West Texas Intermediate (WTI) exchange-traded note may add to its 5.85% rise to R10.67.

Image: Iress

Sasol’s share price tends to track the oil price, which peaked in early September and now appears to be rebounding.

Brent crude oil was up 0.87% to $62.35 a barrel and WTI was up 0.77% to $53.49 a barrel ahead of the JSE’s opening.

Tuesday is an important day in the economics calendar, with Stats SA scheduled to release the third-quarter GDP report at 11.30am.

According to a poll of economists done by Trading Economics, the third-quarter GDP will rebound 1.6%, halting two consecutive quarters of decline.

Investec Bank economist Kamilla Kaplan forecast a 1.5% increase, slightly under the consensus.

“The lift in third-quarter GDP growth momentum is, in the main, expected to have been underpinned by positive growth in the manufacturing and trade sectors, both of which had registered contractions in the first half of 2018,” Kaplan wrote in her weekly note e-mailed on Friday.

“The financial sector, which makes up a significant weighting of over 20% of GDP, is expected to have maintained moderate positive momentum in financial intermediation and auxiliary activities. In contrast, the primary sector of the economy is expected to have underperformed.

“The agriculture sector is likely to have contracted for the third consecutive quarter in the third quarter, on lower-than-expected maize production. Mining data for the third quarter signals that the sector registered a contraction and will therefore also detract from GDP.”

The rand firmed overnight to trade at R13.62/$, R15.50/€ and R17.36/£ at 6.45am.

laingr@businesslive.co.za