JSE faces mixed Asian markets as Covid-19 threat persists
The local currency has shrugged off SA’s weak first quarter GDP performance, while geopolitical tension and the pandemic threatens sentiment
The JSE faces mixed Asian markets on Wednesday morning, with the Hang Seng closed for the National Day Holiday, while Covid-19 and geopolitical tension threaten sentiment.
In morning trade Japan’s Nikkei was down 0.44% while the Shanghai Composite had risen 0.9%.
A private gauge of manufacturing activity in China released earlier beat expectations, though it showed export activity remained weak.
“This may be due to anti-China sentiment or nothing more sinister than consumer uncertainty around the pandemic overseas,” AxiCorp chief global markets strategist Stephen Innes said in a note.
Gold was up 0.18% to $1,783.83/oz while platinum had fallen 0.54% to $823.49. Brent crude was flat at $41.62 a barrel.
The rand was flat at R17.34/$, showing little reaction to data released on Tuesday that showed SA’s economy contracted by 2% in the first quarter, which was better than expected.
The rand take its lead from global sentiment, Peregrine Treasury Solutions executive director Bianca Botes said in a note.
Vehicle sales numbers for June and Absa’s purchasing managers index (PMI) for the same month are scheduled for release later, while the corporate calendar is somewhat bare.
Rising Covid-19 numbers in the US, and geopolitical tension remains a threat to market sentiment, though efforts by global central banks to offset the economic effects of the pandemic are supporting markets.