Picture: 123RF/SOLAR SEVEN
Picture: 123RF/SOLAR SEVEN

The JSE faces mixed, though mostly higher, Asian markets on Monday morning, ahead of what could be a volatile week amid a slew of corporate releases and the budget announcement on Wednesday.

The weekend was a quiet one news-wise, and that has set Asia up for a mixed start to the week, said Oanda senior market analyst Jeffrey Halley in a note.

Global sentiment remains underpinned by expectations of US stimulus and a normalisation of activity as vaccines are rolled out, though concerns about rising inflation have weighed on US bonds recently.

In morning trade the Shanghai composite was flat, while Japan’s Nikkei was up 0.8%, and the Hang Seng 0.43%.

Tencent, which gives direction to the JSE through Naspers, fell 1.21%.

Gold was little changed at $1,784.55/oz while platinum rose 1.18% to $1,286. Brent crude was 1.71% higher at $63.74 a barrel.

Local focus this week is on Wednesday’s budget announcement, while is also a busy week in terms of corporate releases.

On Monday, chemical and energy group Sasol is due to release its half-year results to end-December later, expecting a sharp rise in headline earnings per share (Heps) as it pursues cost-cutting efforts, and seeks to avoid a rights issue.

Anglo American Platinum is due to release its results for the year to end-December later, saying in a recent trading update Heps could rise as much as 69% as it cashes in on high precious metal prices.

Property group Liberty Two Degrees is scheduled to release its annual results to end-December later, warning in a recent trading update its distribution per share could fall as much as 65% as it grapples with continued pressure on tenants due to Covid-19.

gernetzkyk@businesslive.co.za

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