JSE All Share index slightly higher, rand steady in morning trade

Johannesburg Stock Exchange in Sandton. Picture: Itumeleng English/ Independent Newspapers

Johannesburg Stock Exchange in Sandton. Picture: Itumeleng English/ Independent Newspapers

Published Apr 8, 2024


The JSE All-Share index was slightly higher on Monday, trading around the 74 900 points level, as investors worldwide braced for a busy week of key data releases, and central bank decisions.

The rand held steady against the dollar.

According to Trading Economics, traders are looking ahead to the US inflation data being released on Wednesday, along with the minutes from the Federal Reserve’s March meeting, and several speeches from Fed officials.

Additionally, the US earnings season kicks off on Friday with quarterly figures by banking giants. Locally, the focus will be on South Africa’s mining and manufacturing figures set to be released later in the week.

Among individual stocks, top advancers were Sasol, Kumba Iron Ore and DRDGold, with gains ranging from 2.5% to 4.7%.

Reuters reported that the rand firmed in early trade on Monday, after central bank data showed that foreign reserves had increased last month.

At 10.09am the rand was trading at R18.6 against the dollar, about 0.4% stronger than its previous close.

The dollar was down about 0.04% against a basket of global currencies.

South Africa’s net foreign reserves rose to $57.5 billion at the end of March, from $56.6bn in February, central bank data showed. Gross reserves increased to $62.3bn in March from $61.6bn in February.

Bianca Botes, a director at Citadel Global, said the rand started the week steady at R18.70/$; R20.27/€; and R23.63/£.

Friday’s strong US payroll data saw bets for a Fed rate cut in June recede. The market was still pricing in at least two rate cuts for the year, but with only a 51% chance for one in June.

Botes said the dollar continued to dictate to the markets, and US inflation data, due to be released on Wednesday is likely to provide fresh impetus to the dollar, and hence the rand, which was currently range-bound and struggling to gain any meaningful positive momentum.