Picture: 123RF/BLUE BAY
Picture: 123RF/BLUE BAY

The JSE faces higher Asian markets on Tuesday morning, but a sharply lower Tencent, as investors consider the prospect of a Covid-19 vaccine by year-end.

Drugmakers Pfizer and BioNTech announced on Monday that the preliminary results of their vaccine show it prevents more than 90% of infections, boosting the hope that there may be a return to economic normality in coming months.

This has weighed on tech stocks, however, which have benefited in 2020 by increased online activity as people across the globe were kept in their homes.

The logistical problems for distributing a vaccine are immense, Oanda senior market analyst Jeffrey Halley said in a note, adding that it “won’t magically reset the clock to November 2019”.

“That mattered not for financial markets though, who piled into a massive cyclical value stocks versus working from home big tech,” he said.

In morning trade the Shanghai Composite was up 0.12% and the Hang Seng 0.7%.

Tencent, which gives direction to the JSE via shareholder Naspers, had fallen 3.3%.

The rand was 0.12% weaker at R15.40/$, having spent the past five sessions rising against the dollar.

Gold was up 1.25% to $1,883.75/oz while platinum rose 0.85% to $872.65. Brent crude was 0.38% to $41.86 a barrel.

Telkom is expected to report a rise in profits for its half year to end-September later, amid growth in its mobile business. The group said in a recent trading update that headline earnings per share are expected to rise by between 15% and 25%.

gernetzkyk@businesslive.co.za

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