Rand firmer, JSE lower on profit tak­ing

The Star Early Edition - - PRICES -

THE RAND firmed slightly yes­ter­day as the In­de­pen­dence Day hol­i­day in the US re­stricted mar­ket ac­tiv­ity, while stocks weak­ened as in­vestors took prof­its in bourse heavy­weight Naspers.

The rand was trad­ing at R13.185 against the dol­lar by 5.49pm, 0.26 per­cent stronger from the pre­vi­ous ses­sion’s close and fol­low­ing three con­sec­u­tive ses­sions of losses.

A pol­icy con­fer­ence of the ANC was the main fo­cus for mar­kets.

“A fairly quiet week ahead. A lot of peo­ple will look to­mor­row with the con­clu­sion of the ANC pol­icy con­fer­ence if there is any­thing new that is go­ing to come out of that,” said for­eign ex­change and money mar­ket sales at Rand Mer­chant Bank, Jan Sluis-Cre­mer.

Gov­ern­ment bonds firmed, push­ing the yield on the bench­mark bond ma­tur­ing in 2026 lower.

The bench­mark JSE Top40 stock in­dex dropped 0.38 per­cent to 45 819.88 points, while the broader all share dropped 0.22 per­cent to 52 049.25 points.

With trad­ing vol­umes low, gains were curbed by Naspers’ 4.37 per­cent de­cline to R2 488, which re­flected profit-tak­ing af­ter the stock reached a record high of R2 846.50 in May.

“Given the run it has been on it’s not en­tirely un­ex­pected,” In­de­pen­dent Se­cu­ri­ties trader, Ryan Woods said.

A re­bound in gold prices from seven-week lows helped min­ers, with Gold Fields ris­ing 2.97 per­cent to R45.81 and An­gloGold

Ashanti up 2.49 per­cent to R128.14. Mean­while, a rally in World­pay shares to a record high was not enough to off­set a broad-based de­cline among Bri­tish shares yes­ter­day, af­ter a strong start to the sec­ond half for the UK’s top share in­dex.

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