Johannesburg - South African stocks ended higher on Thursday in line with major global markets after a modest stimulus cut by the US central bank, but faltering commodity prices hit mining shares.
The US Federal Reserve ended months of market speculation by deciding to cut its monthly bond purchases by $10 billion to $75 billion on Wednesday, and sought to temper the move by sticking to rock-bottom interest rates.
“The fact the Fed is committed to keeping interest rates low means investors can continue to borrow and buy high-yielding emerging market assets,” Greg Katzenellenbogen, director at Sanlam Private Investments.
But mining shares capped gains on Johannesburg's main stock index, tracking falling metal prices such as gold and copper.
The JSE Top-40 index gained 1.03 percent to 39,607.30 and the broader All-share index was up 0.92 percent at 44,327.84.
Gold Fields, which will be excluded from the blue-chip Top-40 index from next week, topped the losers' list on it, falling 4.27 percent to 32.31 rand.
Rival AngloGold Ashanti tumbled 4.26 percent to 116.80 rand while coal miner Exxaro lost 1.45 percent to 143.20 rand.
Trade was robust, with 295 million shares changing hands, with 135 decliners and 176 advancers.
A total of 52 shares remained unchanged. - Reuters