Picture: MICHAEL BRATT
Picture: MICHAEL BRATT

The JSE edged lower on Thursday morning as global growth fears and a weaker rand prompted broad-based losses.

The resource index eked out some gains, however, boosted by a rising oil price and rand weakness.

The local currency has pushed towards R14.50/$, weakening overnight after British MPs rejected a no-deal Brexit. This sent the rand to a four-month low against the pound.

Chinese data was disappointing, with industrial production falling to a 17-year low in January. US President Donald Trump also said on Wednesday he is “in no rush” to make a trade deal with China, Dow Jones Newswires reported.

At 10am the all share was down 0.16% to 55,741.8 points and the top 40 0.17%. Food and drug retailers were down 1.41% and banks 0.94%. The resources index added 0.39%.

Gold had slipped 0.54% to $1,301.97/oz and platinum 1.23% to $832.94. Brent crude was up 0.37% to $67.90 a barrel.

Diversified miner Glencore had gained 0.84% to R58.83.

Sasol added 1.12% to R428.25.

Exxaro fell 0.33% to R149.50. It said earlier that revenue rose 12% to R25.5bn in the year to end-December, with the miner reporting record sales, export and production volumes.

MC Mining added 3.16% to R9.80, after saying earlier its headline loss per share for the six months to end-December had narrowed to 2.49c, from the prior comparative period’s 69.04c.

African Rainbow Capital gained 3.54% to R4.97, saying profit slumped 83% to R77m in the six months to end-December.

RMB Holdings fell 2.46% to R75.75. It said earlier that its headline earnings for the six months to end-December rose 6%, with the company upping its dividend by the same amount to 178c per share.

Quantum Foods fell 4.05% to R3.32, and said earlier it expects headline earnings per share (HEPS) to fall at least 42% in the six months to end-March.

gernetzkyk@businesslive.co.za