JSE’s Top-40 ekes out record close

South Africa's benchmark Top-40 index eked out a record closing high for a second day running on Thursday as big platinum producers such as industry leader Anglo American Platinum soared on a rally in the white metal's price.

The Top-40 ended the session 0.01 percent higher at a record close of 35,813.24 but the wider All-share index shed 0.08 percent to 40,299.59. Both indices are within spitting distance of historic intraday peaks scaled earlier in the day.

The JSE is seen in this file photo: Leon Nicholas. Credit: INDEPENDENT MEDIA

“Platinums had a great day today after European Central Bank head Mario Draghi said that there will be an increase in European growth in the latter part of this year and the ECB left rates unchanged‚ which is good for global market sentiment‚” said Andrew Flavell trader at Consilium Securities.

At 5pm‚ the platinum index jumped 3.19% and the platinum price increased by 2.01% to $1‚621oz.

The release of positive Chinese trade data on Thursday morning also contributed to global positive sentiment.

China's trade surplus increased sharply in December‚ rising to $31.6 billion from a $19.6 billion surplus in November‚ indicating that the world’s second largest economy is growing after showing signs of a slowdown in recent months.

Leading European markets were all in the black‚ with London’s FTSE 100 last seen trading 0.18% higher.

The Dow Jones Industrial index was also firmer‚ up by 0.24% at 13‚422.76 points at 4.48pm local time.

On the JSE Anglo American (AGL) added 2.33% to R287.17‚ Lonmin (LON) rallied 6.72% to R43.70‚ Amplats (AMS) jumped 4.93% to R500.50 and Aquarius Platinum (AQP) picked up 3.60% to close at R9.20.

ArcelorMittal (ACL) gave back 3.23% to R36.85‚ while Coal of Africa (CZA) continued its recent rally‚ closing 13.40% firmer at R3.30.

The company’s plans to develop metallurgical coal mines in Limpopo came closer to realisation on Wednesday after Chinese authorities granted regulatory approval for a $100m investment by Beijing Haohua Energy Resources.

Construction counter Aveng shed 3.34% to close at R30.70‚ while Basil Read (BSR) gained 5.32% to R10.69. - I-Net Bridge and Reuters