A man looks at an electronic stock quotation board showing Japan's Nikkei average outside a brokerage in Tokyo, Japan, November 13, 2018. Picture: REUTERS/Toru Hanai/File Photo
A man looks at an electronic stock quotation board showing Japan's Nikkei average outside a brokerage in Tokyo, Japan, November 13, 2018. Picture: REUTERS/Toru Hanai/File Photo

The JSE could struggle to find direction on Tuesday morning as some Asian stock markets edged higher following Monday’s sharp sell-off while Chinese equity markets fell further.

SA’s main bourse slipped more than 1.5% to a one-month low on Monday, extending losses to a third-consecutive session, amid growing concerns that the global economy is slowing.

Monday’s declines were led by mining stocks, which came under pressure as Asian markets posted their worst one-day losses so far in 2019.

But Japan’s Nikkei 225 index was 2% stronger on Tuesday, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index and Korea’s Kospi both edged slightly higher. The Shanghai Composite, however, was down 1%.

While shares in Naspers’s main asset, Tencent, were 0.7% lower, BHP Group was up 1.2% in Australia.

On the JSE, small-caps including financial services group Ecsponent and drilling services company Master Drilling Group are due to report financial results.

Ecsponent said on Monday its headline earnings per share in the six months ended December had declined by up to 90%.

Investors are also digesting news that Naspers plans to list its international assets in Amsterdam.

Meanwhile, Statistics SA is scheduled to report quarterly employment statistics late on Tuesday morning.

SA’s monetary policy committee will meet over the next three days to decide on the country’s interest rates, with an announcement due on Thursday.

The rand was slightly weaker on Tuesday morning, trading 0.05% down versus the dollar at R14.32/$. Against the pound it was 0.04% weaker at R18.89/£ and versus the euro it was 0.06% down at R16.20.

Late on Monday night, the UK parliament took over control of the Brexit process from Prime Minister Theresa May, according to a report from Bloomberg.

hedleyn@businesslive.co.za