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24 Jan 2008 12:57
Bargain hunting among global equity markets underpinned a solid performance on the JSE on Thursday, lifting it by 3,3% at noon.
By the same time, resources had collected 4,74%, the platinum-mining index advanced 5,1% and the gold-mining index added 1,51%.
Industrials perked up 2,25%, financials gained 2,2% and banks were 2,07% higher.
The rand was bid at 7,05 to the United States dollar from 7,12 when the JSE closed on Wednesday, while gold was quoted at $892,85 a troy ounce from $888,98/oz at the JSE’s last close.
Overseas, the United Kingdom’s FTSE 100 was 2,74% firmer. In Asia, the Hang Seng pulled back 2,29% and the Nikkei gained 2,06%.
“There was a huge turnaround overnight in the Dow. It was down 300 points at one stage and then ended up 300 points, which is possibly because short positions were coming out of that market. Plus, bargain hunting crept back into the Dow, which then filtered through to Asian markets, European markets and the JSE,” said a local trader.
Overnight, the DJIA rose 2,5%, the Nasdaq gained 1,05% and the S&P500 was 2,14% higher.
The trader said that from a global perspective, bargain hunting had pushed world equity markets up after the turmoil seen earlier this week.
“Still, there is a lot of nervousness around, and the volatility is unbelievable. You would have to have nerves of steel to trade in this market effectively. But I think the underlying value is emerging,” he said.
The trader also said that he didn’t think it was aggressive buying. “Guys are probably taking a bit of a nibble at low levels,” he added, and said that markets just needed the dust to settle down, and once they do, market players would see more buying come back.
“But there is still a lot of uncertainty, and no one knows where to go from here. However, we also have to remember that with volatility comes a lot of opportunity,” he concluded.
Among resource stocks at noon, BHP Billiton added R8, or 4,55%, to R184, Anglo American rose R25,47, or 7,41%, to R369 and Sasol climbed R5, or 1,65%, to R308.
Gold miner AngloGold Ashanti increased R5,99, or 2%, to R305 and Gold Fields edged up 50 cents to R110,50.
Platinum miner Anglo Platinum shot up R47,27, or 5,14%, to R966,27 and Impala Platinum collected R12,51, or 5,54%, to R238,50. Lonmin shed R1,01 to R415,99. It said on Thursday that for the quarter to December 2007, total tonnes mined were 3,1-million—a decline of 11% on the 3,4-million tonnes mined in the first quarter of the previous year.
Aquarius Platinum recovered R2,77, or 3,76%, to R76,50. It reported earlier that safety, industrial relations and power shortage shutdowns resulted in a 2% fall in its second quarter attributable production to 137 456 platinum group metal ounces.
Diversified industrials group Barloworld strengthened R3,71, or 4,31%, to R89,69 and Imperial lifted R4,33, or 5,54%, to R82,53.
Luxury goods group Richemont was R1,69, or 4,49%, better at R39,30.
In the telecommunications sector, fixed-line operator Telkom was up R2,54, or 1,8%, to R143,99, while mobile operator MTN Group advanced R5,01, or 4,75%, to R110,51.
Banker Absa gained R3,73, or 3,7%, to R104,43, FirstRand climbed 42 cents, or 2,45%, to R17,58 and Nedbank pocketed R4,46, or 4%, to R115,91.—I-Net Bridge
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