A strong performance by market heavyweight Naspers, as well as higher precious metal miners, kept the JSE positive on Wednesday morning, though trading volumes were subdued.

Range-bound trade is expected ahead of testimony by US Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell before Congress starting at 4pm SA time, while US Fed minutes from their last meeting are due at 8pm. 

US Fed policy remains by far the biggest factor offering support for global equity markets, said Oanda analyst Craig Erlam. “The economy alone can no longer support the stock market, which has forced the Fed to play a more active role and likely reverse some of its tightening of last year.”

At 9.10am the all share was up 0.46% to 57,228.3 points and the top 40 0.38%. Banks had added 0.22%, gold miners 0.92% and platinums 1.67%.

Naspers was up 0.92%.

Gold had fallen 0.41% to $1,391.57/oz and platinum was down 0.34% to $809.11. Brent crude was 0.71% higher at $64.98 a barrel.