SA shares near record as rand boosts banks

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South African stocks started August on a positive note, hitting near their all-time high and joining global peers in a rally as some concerns about China’s regulatory crackdown eased and that progress on a US infrastructure spending plan has heightened sentiment.

The FTSE / JSE Africa All Share index rose 0.9%, before trimming gains to 0.5% at 9:56 a.m. in Johannesburg, with the largest companies in the index – Naspers, Anglo American, BHP Group Plc and Richemont – among the leaders the advance. MTN Group won after its Nigerian unit announced an increase in profits.

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Stock benchmarks in Asia climbed on Monday, with shares in Hong Kong and China erasing some of last week’s rout sparked by Beijing’s crackdown on everything from technology to private education and real estate. The nation is also facing a peak in Covid-19 and signs of slowing economic growth, spurring bets on monetary easing and a sovereign debt recovery.

Asian markets are broadly positive overall, despite weaker-than-expected Chinese PMI data for July, citing rising costs, released over the weekend and the biggest resurgence of Covid-19 cases in China as the delta variant is spreading to 18 provinces, ”said Rella Suskin, research manager at Benguela Global Fund Managers in Johannesburg.

  • Naspers, with a 14% weight in the index, is up 1% to give the market the biggest boost, as risk sentiment countered weakness at part-owned online giant Tencent Holdings in Hong Kong . Naspers subsidiary Prosus NV, which owns the company’s 29% stake in Tencent, increases 1.2%
  • Industrial miners climb 0.9% as iron ore prices rise
  • Kumba iron ore + 0.8%, African Rainbow Minerals + 1.6%, Anglo American Plc + 1.5%, Glencore Plc + 1.1%
  • Luxury retailer Richemont earns up to 1.1%
  • Bank stocks rise 0.9% as the rand strengthens
  • FirstRand + 1.1% Capitec Bank Holdings + 1.2%, Standard Bank Group + 1%, Absa Group + 0.8%, Investec Plc + 0.1%
  • MTN grows 2.3% after results from its unit in Nigeria, the company’s largest market
  • Foreign investors were net sellers of South African stocks on Friday, ceding 128 million rand ($ 8.78 million) of shares, according to data from brokerage firm JSE.

© 2021 Bloomberg

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