Picture: MICHAEL ETTERSHANK
Picture: MICHAEL ETTERSHANK

The JSE was subdued on Thursday morning, while global markets were mixed as focus shifts to economic data from the US. 

Manufacturing and industrial production figures will be in the spotlight on Thursday as markets continue to bet on the likelihood that the US Federal Reserve (Fed) will cut its interest rate for the third time in 2019.

Rate cut hopes were bolstered by US retail sales, which fell for the first time in seven months, adding to concerns about the health of the US economy.

“While a single economic release isn’t enough to conclude that consumers are becoming more cautious, it may strengthen the belief that the weakness in other parts of the economy will translate into less consumer spending,” FXTM chief market strategist Hussein Sayed said. 

“Given that a rate cut is mostly priced into markets, any development in trade and earnings will guide the direction of equities and fixed income assets,” Sayed said.

Earlier, the Shanghai Composite and Japan's Nikkei 225 were little changed while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.69%.

In Europe, the FTSE 100 was up 0.43% while France's CAC 40 and Germany's DAX were flat. EU officials are expected to meet on Thursday amid hopes for a Brexit deal. 

The JSE all share was flat 56,133.3 points and the top 40  was little changed. Platinum miners were up 1.87% and industrials 0.39%. 

Growthpoint added 0.26% to R22.91. The property company said on Thursday that it would offer Capital & Regional shareholders a premium of about 100% for their shares as it plans to acquire about 30.3% of Capital & Regional. 

Datatec said on Thursday that its headline earnings per share increased to 2.3 US cents in the six months to end-August, from 0.7c in the comparable period. Its share price was little changed  at R31.77.

mjoo@businesslive.co.za