The JSE faces mixed signals on global markets on Wednesday morning, with traders awaiting further clarity on the short-term direction of the US-China trade war.

Reports have suggested the US is considering lifting additional tariffs already imposed on China, with markets waiting for this confirmation.

Asian markets were lower on Wednesday, but the pull back was mild, in what seems to be little more than a healthy dose of profit-taking after a solid start to the week, said AxiTrader chief Asia market strategist Stephen Innes in a note.

At 6.10am the Shanghai Composite was down 0.2% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng had fallen 0.1%.

Tencent was flat.

Gold was up 0.2% to $1,486.70/oz, having fallen 1.5% on Tuesday. Platinum had fallen 0.2% to $924.50/oz while Brent crude had given back 0.6% to $62.56 a barrel.

The rand was 0.11% firmer at R14.73/$.

“With the US-China trade war gradually working its way towards some near-term agreement, it will be interesting to see how the rand plays out over the next few days,” said Peregrine Treasury Solutions corporate treasury manager Bianca Botes in a note. For now, a trading range of R14.69/$ to R14.80/$ can be expected.

The JSE starts Wednesday having spent the past five sessions pushing higher.

The local corporate calendar is light, and there are no major domestic economic releases.

International focus is on US-China trade war related headlines, while eurozone retail sales numbers for September will also be watched.