Global markets including the JSE fell on
Wednesday as signs of economic weakness were put on the spotlight via economic
data and earnings.
Fears were ignited by a miss in earnings
estimates by some of the major US banks like Bank of America, Goldman Sachs and
JP Morgan Chase. The weakness started in Asia where the Nikkei shed 0.45%, the
Shanghai Composite Index dropped 0.74% and the Hang Seng lost 1.19%. Deeper
losses were recorded across the major European benchmarks while stocks in the
USA opened sharply weaker. US stocks slipped further into the red due to worse
than expected retail sales and industrial production numbers.
On the currency market, the rand slipped
further into the red in today’s session as emerging markets wobbled against the
greenback. At 17.00 CAT, the local unit was trading 2.05% weaker at R18.66.
On the JSE, Telkom [JSE:TKG] was
one of the day’s biggest decliners after the stock fell 16.33% to close at R19.60,
while its sector peer MTN Group [JSE:MTN]
lost 8.12% to close at R47.63. Motus Holdings [JSE:MTH]
came under significant pressure as it plummeted by 17.07% to close at R36.00,
while logistics provider Super Group [JSE:SPG]
tumbled 11.49% to close at R16.17. Redefine Properties [JSE:RDF]
which has had a consistent uptrend over the past couple of sessions, retreated
in today’s session as it closed 16.88% lower at R2.61. High volatility has
become the norm for oil and gas producer, Sasol [JSE:SOL]
which lost 14.48% to close at R59.37 in today’s session. Declines were also
recorded for platinum miner, Northam Platinum [JSE:NHM]
which slipped 10.05% to close at R85.23, as well as Impala Platinum [JSE:IMP]
which closed at R115.40 after losing 7.99%.
A couple of index heavyweights managed to
close firmer on the day however this was not enough to lift the all-share
index. Naspers [JSE:NPN]
gained 1.69% as it closed at R2684.91, while Prosus [JSE:PRX]
managed to gain 0.96% to close at R1270.72. Hospitality Property Fund [JSE:HPB]
rallied 8.7% to close at R5.00, while Intu Properties [JSE:ITU]
advanced 2.19% to close at R1.40. Reunert [JSE:RLO]
surged 2.98% to close at R48.00, while Alexander Forbes [JSE:AFH]
closed at R4.73 after gaining 4.88%. Gains were also recorded for British
American Tobacco [JSE:BTI]
which added 1.51% to close at R680.11, as well as DRD Gold [JSE:DRD]
which rose 1.07% to close at R16.01.
The JSE Top-40 index eventually closed
3.32% weaker while the JSE All-Share index lost 3.43%. The Financials index
took the bigger knock of the day as it fell 7.21%, while the Industrials and
Resources indices lost 1.37% and 4.88% respectively.
Brent crude slipped on the back of evidence
showing declining consumer demand. The commodity was trading 7.5% weaker at
$27.38/barrel just after the JSE close.
At 17.00 CAT, Gold was 0.26% softer at
$1721.44/Oz, Palladium had lost 2.84% to trade at $2171.14/Oz, and Platinum was
up 1.19% at $781.98/Oz.
*Musa Makoni is a trading specialist at Purple Group