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Picture: 123RF/NIRUT
Picture: 123RF/NIRUT

The JSE looks set to struggle amid a torrid session for Asian markets on Monday morning, with investors digesting news that China's Covid-19 outbreak has worsened.

The death toll in China's commercial hub Shanghai continued to climb over the weekend, despite a fourth week of hard lockdowns, while authorities have begun mass testing in Beijing, the country's capital, warning that infections are spreading.

China's zero-tolerance approach to the pandemic is generating concerns of further disruptions for a global economy still recovering from two years of the pandemic, while also grappling with the shock from Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

In early trade, the Shanghai Composite had slumped 2.42% and the Hang Seng 2.59%, while Japan's Nikkei had given back 1.58%.

Tencent, which can give direction to the local bourse via Naspers, had lost 1.47%.

Gold was down 0.46% at $1,922.84/oz, while platinum had risen 0.1% to $928.01. Brent crude was 2.36% weaker at $103.22 a barrel.

The rand was flat at R15.62/$.

Market sentiment in Europe may be lifted on Monday after the re-election of President Emmanuel Macron, and there had been concerns over the prospect of more populist policies being pushed by rival Marine Le Pen, should she have secured victory.

There is also much focus on US earnings this week, as well as inflation numbers from the country, with numerous giants including Amazon and Apple set to report.

Locally, SA is also seeing an uptick in Covid-19 numbers, raising concerns the country may have to deal with a fifth wave of the pandemic.

Investment group PSG is due to report its results for the year to end-February later, with net asset value per share expected to rise by more than a third, though it didn't go into much detail in its recent trading update.

gernetzkyk@businesslive.co.za

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