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An employee passes share price information displayed on an electronic ticker board inside the London Stock Exchange Group’s offices in London, the UK. Picture: BLOOMBERG VIA GETTY IMAGES/LUKE MACGREGOR
An employee passes share price information displayed on an electronic ticker board inside the London Stock Exchange Group’s offices in London, the UK. Picture: BLOOMBERG VIA GETTY IMAGES/LUKE MACGREGOR

The JSE faces mixed and somewhat muted Asian markets on Tuesday morning, with investors awaiting risk events this week, including the European Central Bank (ECB) policy announcement on Thursday.

Soaring inflation and deteriorating global growth prospects are dominating sentiment, with investors still uncertain at how aggressive hikes will need to be to rein in inflation at multi-decade highs.

The next couple of weeks could be huge for market sentiment going into the summer, from the ECB rate decision on Thursday to US inflation on Friday and the US Federal Reserve meeting next week, Oanda senior market analyst Craig Erlam said in a note on Monday.

“A lot has been priced into the markets when it comes to interest rates, but it may still not be enough. And there’s perhaps a bit of denial about the economic prospects, especially if inflation falls at a much slower rate,” Erlam said.

The Royal Bank of Australia upped interest rates by 50 basis points on Tuesday, twice what the market expected.

Overnight news included UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson narrowly surviving a no-confidence vote, ending some uncertainty for the UK market. Rajesh and Atul Gupta were arrested, a major step in terms of holding those responsible for state capture in SA to account.

In early trade the Hang Seng was down 0.12% and Australia’s All Ordinaries index 0.94%. The Hang Seng was up 0.48% and Japan’s Nikkei 0.54%.

Tencent, which can give the local bourse direction via the Naspers stable, had gained 1.14%.

Gold was flat at $1,842.68/oz, while platinum fell 2.2% to $1,008.50. Brent crude was 0.19% higher at $120.13 a barrel.

The rand was 0.45% weaker at R15.48/$.

The local corporate calendar is somewhat bare on Tuesday, with all eyes on SA’s first-quarter GDP numbers, due at 11.30am. Expectations are that the growth rate is unchanged at 1.7% year on year relative to the last quarter of 2021 — disappointing as higher pace had been expected when the year began.

Load-shedding, flooding and global disruptions from the war in Ukraine which has pushed up inflation, have dimmed SA’s economic prospects.

gernetzkyk@businesslive.co.za

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