JSE faces another cautious day of trading
South African stocks could be in for another cautious day of trading on Thursday as global equity markets retreat following a seven-session winning streak.
US stocks fell on Wednesday, as Brent crude dipped briefly below $60 a barrel.
“Trade woes linger, but the main focus was US consumer price inflation data, which missed slightly to the downside,” analysts at ANZ Banking Group said.
“The feel-good exuberance in the past week — driven largely by Mexico averting trade tariffs and poor US jobs data, sparking speculation of a Fed rate cut — has gradually tapered and cautiousness is now seeping into global markets once more,” analysts at Singapore’s OCBC Bank said.
“Trade pessimism continues to be the main source of bearishness in the markets, as US President Donald Trump continues with his rhetoric of a new set of tariffs on Chinese goods if there is not a forthcoming meeting between himself and President Xi at the G20 meeting,” OCBC added.
Amid ongoing protests over a contentious extradition bill, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell 0.9% on Thursday morning, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 lost 0.6% and Korea’s Kospi 0.9%.
The Shanghai Composite and Australia’s main benchmark were flat.
Shares in Chinese internet and gaming giant Tencent retreated 1.8%. Major shareholder and JSE-heavyweight Naspers said after the market’s close on Wednesday that earnings in the year to end-March rose by as much as a third.
Core headline earnings per share from total operations were expected to be up by between 31% and 33%, the group said.
Meanwhile, BHP Group, the JSE top-40 index’s third largest constituent, was 0.8% down in Australia.
No major company results are expected on the JSE on Thursday.
Statistics SA is scheduled to publish wholesale trade sales numbers for April, mining production and sales data for the same month, and motor trade sales figures.
The rand was about 0.3% weaker against major currencies on Thursday morning. It was at R14.91/$, R18.92/£, and R16.85/€.