JSE faces long-weekend hangover
The S&P 500 needs a 'Santa Claus rally' of 5% to avoid ending 2018 in the red, while only a miracle at Christmas will save this year for the JSE
Monday's public holiday helped the JSE sidestep a global slump in which the S&P 500 fell 2.1%, but the pain may have only been delayed.
Unless the traditional “Santa Claus rally” in the last few trading days of 2018 lifts the S&P 500 by more than 4.8%, US stocks are going to record a negative year measured by their key benchmark index.
The JSE top 40 is down 13% for the year-to-date, meaning the local bourse will need a miracle this Christmas to save 2018.
Asian markets indicated that the JSE was more likely to get a visit from the Grinch than Santa on Tuesday.
The JSE top 40's largest constituent, Naspers, tends to track its main asset, Tencent, which was down 2.33% to HK$301.60 in Hong Kong.
But the top 40's second largest constituent, BHP, was up 0.43% to A$33.68 in Sydney.
One of the reasons for the gloomy tone in markets is that the US Federal Reserve is expected to announce a 25 basis-points interest-rate increase at 7pm South African time on Wednesday, taking the ceiling of its target range to 2.5%.
Yet another Twitter tirade against central bank independence by US President Donald Trump on Monday added to the mounting worries over how badly the world's largest economy was being managed.