File image: Bourses around the globe remained bullish last week as the global economic upturn and better than expected earnings for listed companies pushed share prices higher.

JOHANNESBURG - The Dow Jones industrial index broke through the 22000 points level on Thursday and at the close of the JSE on Friday it traded on 22 065. This was 11% higher than the beginning of the year and 20% better than a year ago.

The Dow traded nine days in a row higher and on the back of strong employment data for July, investors remain positive towards strong economic growth and high earnings growth for listed companies.

The US economy added 209000 new jobs in July and the average hourly earnings also were up 0.3percent. This indicates a strong increase in consumer spending.

The EU also reported last week that the European economy grew by 2.2% during the second quarter, as a strong recovery in this region is also expected.

A high possibility for an increase in the bank rate by the US Federal Reserve, however, had a negative bearing on the rand.

The strong movement in US shares, together with increases in European and UK shares also boosted demand for emerging economy assets. This, together with the much weaker rand, pushed shares on the JSE to new record levels.

The all share index gained 1061 points (1.9%) last week to close Friday on 55944.83 points. The index is 8.4% up since the beginning of July, and 10.4percent higher since the beginning of the year (year-to-date).

Over the week, the industrial index increased 1.4% and is now 15% higher for the year to date. Financials, despite the weaker rand, also ended higher for the week by 2.1%.

Resources continued their exceptional run and traded 3% up for the week and more than 15% higher since the beginning of July.

The listed property index also recovered most of its previous losses and ended the week 1.7% higher.

The rand stayed under pressure and had one of its worst weeks this year.

On Friday at the close of the JSE, the rand traded at R13.47 to the dollar. This was 46cents, or 3.5% weaker than the previous Friday close of R13.01.

 - BUSINESS REPORT