Picture: JSE
Picture: JSE

The JSE opened firmer on Thursday as focus shifts to the Group of 20 (G20) summit this week amid growing expectations that the US and China will settle their trade dispute.

Citing Chinese media reports, Reuters reported that the US and China had agreed to a tentative truce ahead of their meeting at the G20 summit in Japan on Saturday.

US President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that there was a possibility he and Chinese President Xi Jinping would reach a trade deal at the summit. However, Trump said that he was prepared to impose further tariffs on China should the trade dispute continue. 

At 10am, the Shanghai Composite had gained 0.69% and the Hong Kong Hang Seng 1.34%, while Japan's Nikkei 225 had fallen 0.51%. 

The JSE all share had gained 0.25% to 58,565.20 and the top 40 0.28%. General retailers were up 0.87% and industrials 0.29%.

Murray and Roberts jumped 8.72% to R14.84, reaching its best level since November in intraday trade. 

Blue Label Telecoms dropped 3.75% to R4.88 after the debt of its investee, Cell C, was downgraded by S&P Global Ratings for the second time in three months. 

PPC had gained 2.5% to R4.92. On Wednesday, the cement maker postponed the release of its annual results just 20 minutes before the presentation, saying it needed to assess the effect of Zimbabwe's currency reforms.  

The SA Reserve Bank released the first quarterly bulletin for 2019, showing that SAs trade surplus narrowed from R71.8bn in the fourth quarter of 2018 to R43bn. Statistics SA is expected to release producer price index figures for May. 

mjoo@businesslive.co.za