Richemont soars 6% but JSE closes flat

The Star Early Edition - - PRICES - Reuters

STOCKS were flat over­all yes­ter­day, but lux­ury goods group Richemont gained 6 per­cent to reach a 10-month high af­ter post­ing stronger than ex­pected sales.

The bench­mark JSE Top40 in­dex de­clined 0.06 per­cent to 45 720.20 points, while the all share in­dex rose 0.01 per­cent to 52 444.36 points.

Richemont jumped 6.02 per­cent to R102.89 on the JSE. Strong de­mand for jew­ellery and im­proved watch sales in its own stores helped the com­pany beat fore­casts with a 5 per­cent rise glob­ally in sales in the quar­ter to De­cem­ber, in a sign the watch in­dus­try may see a re­cov­ery this year.

Swiss watch­mak­ers have been grap­pling with weak de­mand in their big­gest mar­kets, Hong Kong and the US and Chi­nese tourist shop­pers avoid­ing Europe for fear of ex­trem­ist at­tacks, so the im­prove­ment across all Richemont’s ma­jor re­gions is good news for the in­dus­try.

Gold min­ing firms ral­lied af­ter the bullion price surged to more than $1 200 (R16 503) an ounce, its high­est level in seven weeks, fol­low­ing US Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump’s news brief­ing on Wed­nes­day.

An­gloGold Ashanti was the leader of the pack, ad­vanc­ing 4.28 per­cent to R163.85, while Gold Fields gained 2.16 per­cent to end the ses­sion at R45.88.

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