The JSE opened firmer on Thursday with broad-based gains‚ led by Naspers‚ on upbeat global markets and a stronger rand.
Global markets shrugged off risk-off sentiment‚ looking past US president Donald Trump’s decision to walk away from the Iran nuclear deal. Trump has now warned businesses to move out of Iran in three to six months.
The rand firmed to R12.4392 to the dollar from R12.561‚ before losing ground again in choppy trade.
The Dow closed 0.75% higher on Wednesday. JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs were the top performers‚ both gaining more than 2%‚ while Walmart dropped more than 3%.
Asian markets were firmer‚ with the Nikkei 225 up 0.39% and the Hang Seng 0.89%.
Energy stocks were also up on a firmer oil price‚ with Brent crude rising 0.49% to $77.80 a barrel in early trade. Metal prices were largely flat.
Higher oil prices could heighten the already high geopolitical tension in the world‚ TreasuryOne analyst Wichard Cilliers said.
“President Trump even warned he can impose sanctions on some European countries if they continue to work with Iran‚” Cilliers said.
Naspers jumped more than 2% following the conclusion of the transaction in which it sold its stake in Flipkart‚ leaving it with R151bn set to be spent on strengthening its balance sheet and on new investments.
At 10am the all share was 0.73% higher at 58‚336 points and the top 40 up 0.86%. Banks rose 1.69%‚ industrials 0.93%‚ financials 0.81% and resources 0.25%. The platinum index shed 1.18%‚ gold 1.09%‚ and food and drug retailers 0.7%.
Sasol was up 2.33% to R456.65.
Anheuser-Busch InBev dropped 1.88% to R1 210 on the firmer rand after its first-quarter update on Wednesday was initially met favourably in the market.
Nedbank leapt 4.55% to R313.85 and Barclays Africa 2.2% to R181.32.
Redefine rose 1.12% to R11.75.
MTN rose 1.38% to R125.93 amid reports the group planned to borrow as much as 400-billion naira ($1.1bn) in Nigeria this year.
Naspers was up 2.31% to R3 147.21.
Source: TMG Digital.