Picture: MARTIN RHODES
Picture: MARTIN RHODES

The JSE was firmer on Thursday morning with banks and resources leading gains, after the US and China agreed to meet to resume trade talks.  

Global equities were slightly boosted on Thursday after China's commerce ministry confirmed that the US and China would meet in Washington DC in early October. The two countries will hold talks in September before the major negotiations.

“I am less optimistic as I do not believe either side has reached the point of desperation that will likely lead to compromise and a deal, but I guess this is better than the lines of communication being closed altogether,” senior market analyst at Oanda Craig Erlam said. 

Earlier, the Shanghai Composite was up 0.96% and Japan's Nikkei 225% 2.12%, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was flat.

At 10.25am, the JSE all share added 0.38% to 55,113.70 points and the top 40 rose 0.39%. Banks were up 1.53% and resources 1.23%.

Sanlam added 2.42% to R73.63. The company said on Thursday that its diluted headline earnings per share fell 32% to 169c in the six months to end-June. 

Firstrand was up 1.98% to R61.19 after it said on Thursday that its basic and diluted headline earnings per share increased 5% to 497.2c in the year to end-June. 

mjoo@businesslive.co.za