Banks help pare JSE losses

The JSE was down only 0,83% at noon on Tuesday, as buying interest among banks helped it recover from sharp losses of over 4% in the morning session.

By noon, the platinum mining index fell 2,27%, resources were down 1,72%, and the gold mining index pulled back 1,47%. Industrials eased 0,28%, but financials perked up 0,33% and banks lifted 0,75%.

The rand was bid at 7,24 to the US dollar from 7,18 when the JSE closed on Monday, while gold was quoted at $863,10 a troy ounce from $872/oz at the JSE’s last close.

Overseas, the United Kingdom’s FTSE 100 was up 0,87% at midday. In Asia, the Hang Seng gave up 8,65% and the Nikkei retreated 5,65%.

“The JSE is looking much better after it’s very gloomy start. The FTSE in the UK had a nice little rally this morning, with buying coming back into banks and financial stocks there, which helped lift banks and financials on the JSE,” said a Johannesburg-based equities trader.

He added that resources were still very weak, as demand had dropped, but that some rand hedged stocks like Remgro were doing better.

At noon, diversified industrial group Remgro was R3,48, or 1,98% higher, at R179,48.

He also said that it was still a mixed market across the board. “I think the volatility in the market is the highest it has ever been, and it is probably higher than at the time of the initial subprime concerns. However, I don’t think that Wall Street is going to be down as much as everyone thinks it will be when it opens later,” he said, adding that the JSE will take direction from the US market when it opens later.

Among other stocks on the JSE, resource group Anglo American was off R14,70, or 4,25%, to R331 but BHP Billiton added R1,99, or 1,12%, to R179,50. Sasol dipped R2 to R316.

Gold miner AngloGold Ashanti was R6, or 2,01% lower, at R292 but Harmony recovered R1, or 1,35%, to R75.

Platinum miner Anglo Platinum was down R28,01, or 2,77%, to R982,99 and Impala Platinum declined R4,04, or 1,69%, to R235,16.

In the building and construction sector, Aveng lifted 32 cents to R51,47, but Raubex Group tumbled R4,90, or 12,25%, to R35,10.

Brewer SABMiller shed 39 cents to R157,36.

Among banks and financials, Investec was up 97 cents, or 1,69%, to R58,47, Investec gained R1,19, or 2,12%, to R57,20 and Absa climbed R1,44, or 1,45%, to R100,94. – I-Net Bridge

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