Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Picture: REUTERS
Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Picture: REUTERS

The JSE could take its lead from weaker Asian markets on Tuesday morning, with the coronavirus once again dominating investor focus.

A weaker rand and higher gold price could benefit local miners.

Tencent was down 1.8% on Tuesday morning in Hong Kong trade, boding ill for Naspers, which has the largest single stake in the Chinese tech firm.

Sentiment was fragile on Tuesday. Tech giant Apple has issued a warning about iPhone output, saying in a quarterly update that the ramp-up of production remained slow, as many businesses in China face labour shortages due to the viral outbreak.

“Investors outside China markets continued to mildly fret about supply chains and demand contraction, two channels which are difficult to assess,” said AxiCorp chief market strategist Stephen Innes in a note.

Locally, the rand has once again weakened past the psychologically important R15/$ level. On Monday, ratings agency Moody’s Investors Service slashed its growth forecast for SA for 2020 to 0.7%, from 1% previously.

Weaker economic growth will weigh on the government’s tax revenue, and make it even more difficult to deal with the fiscal deficit.

In morning trade on Tuesday, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was down 1.3% and Japan’s Nikkei 1.5%.

Gold had gained 0.4% to $1,586.80/oz while platinum had risen 0.6% to $971.73. Brent crude was 0.89% lower at $57.02 a barrel.

Locally, Kumba Iron Ore, Pan African Resources and Super Group are all expected to give updates on their recent operations.

gernetzkyk@businesslive.co.za