Business Day

Sales data de­press re­tail stocks

- MAARTEN MITTNER Mar­kets Writer Business · Foreign Exchange Market · Currencies · Finance · Stocks & Markets · Retail · Financial Markets · Industries · Federal Reserve System · United States of America · Reserve Bank of India · Woolworths Limited · Richemont · Anglo Platinum · Standard Bank Group · Monetary Authority of Singapore · JSE Limited · Emerging Markets · Kumba Iron Ore · Anglo American plc · Amsterdam Airport Schiphol

THE JSE closed weaker on Wed­nes­day as dis­ap­point­ing re­tail sales data weighed on lo­cal re­tail stocks.

Global trade was cau­tious as the black­out pe­riod for of­fi­cials of the US Fed­eral Re­serve com­menced. This meant no com­ment on in­ter­est rates was pos­si­ble un­til af­ter next week’s sched­uled meet­ing of the fed­eral open mar­ket com­mit­tee.

A lack of eco­nomic data on the day pro­vided lit­tle guid­ance for global mar­kets, with the lower Brent crude price dent­ing sen­ti­ment. Brent crude had shed 2.12% to $46.14 a bar­rel by the JSE’s close, on re­newed in­di­ca­tions of over­sup­ply con­straints in the sec­tor.

Lo­cal re­tail sales grew 0.8% in July from a year ear­lier, af­ter be­ing re­vised down­wards to 1.4% (1.7%) in June. Growth of 2% had been ex­pected.

The av­er­age for real re­tail sales growth is 5% a year, which will make it dif­fi­cult for the Re­serve Bank to raise rates in 2016.

Among in­di­vid­ual shares, re­tailer Tru­worths (TRU) shed 4.07% to R71.95, Wool­worths (WHL) dropped 4.2% to R80 and Mr Price (MRP) plum­meted 5.64% to R150.32.

Sa­sol (SOL) firmed for the third con­sec­u­tive day, up 2.74% to R386.50, de­spite weaker oil prices, as the mar­ket warmed to its an­nual re­sults.

Richemont (CFR) was 4.47% lower at R84.69, af­ter an­nounc­ing to­tal sales were 13% lower for the first five months of the cur­rent fi­nan­cial year.

Kumba Iron Ore (KIO) was 3.91% off at R120.35 af­ter an­nounc­ing ear­lier that it was fac­ing an ad­di­tional pay­ment of R1bn for the 2011 tax year.

An­glo Amer­i­can Plat­inum (AMS) closed 1.74% lower at R395.50 af­ter it re­ported fur­nace trou­ble on Tues­day.

Stan­dard Bank (SBK) fared worst in its sec­tor, down 3.31% to R136.42.

In prop­erty, MAS (MSP) firmed 2.45% to R18.85.

The rand was stronger in late trade de­spite the dis­ap­point­ing re­tail data. At 6.17pm, the ex­change rate was R14.2961/$ from Tues­day’s R14.3951/$. It was R16.1088 to the euro from R16.1491‚ and R18.8783 to the pound from R18.9904.

The euro was at $1.1267 from $1.1219 pre­vi­ously.

De­spite be­ing con­fined to a nar­row trad­ing range through­out the day, the lo­cal bond mar­ket strength­ened slightly in the early evening. At 6.21pm, the bench­mark R186 was bid at 8.670% and of­fered at 8.660% from Tues­day’s 8.705%. The R207 was bid at 7.910% and of­fered at 7.895% from 7.950%.

South African fu­tures tracked the JSE weaker de­spite a stronger Dow.

At 6.25pm the Dow Jones in­dus­trial av­er­age was up 0.31% to 18,122.67.

At the same time, the lo­cal near­dated top 40 Alsi fu­tures in­dex was 0.28% lower at 46,100 points, with 34,774 con­tracts traded from Tues­day’s 125,105.

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