The JSE. Photo: Simphiwe Mbokazi.

The JSE lifted at the opening session on Friday‚ in line with global markets‚ after the China’s second-quarter GDP data broadly met market expectations.

At 09:25 local time‚ the JSE all-share index was up 0.49% at 33‚555.55 points‚ with resources gaining 0.71%‚ gold shares rising 1.35% and platinum counters climbing 0.45%.

Financials lifted 0.32%‚ banking stocks edged up 0.29% and industrials were 0.41% firmer.

The rand was trading at 8.33 to the US dollar‚ from 8.36 at the JSE’s close on Thursday‚ while gold changed hands at US$1‚572.55 a troy ounce from US$1‚559.05/oz at the JSE’s previous close and platinum was quoted at $1‚422.50/oz‚ from $1‚410/oz previously.

“On the whole China’s GDP data wasn’t that great but at the same it wasn’t as bad as some had been anticipating. We are‚ as a result‚ seeing some buying interest coming back into the resources sector‚” said Devin Shutte‚ a trader at stockbrokerage Newstrading.

European stocks started off higher‚ with the London’s FTSE 100 up 0.41%.

China’s economy grew 7.6% in the April-June period‚ matching the median estimate of 15 economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires. While much of the focus was on the growth figures‚ industrial production and retail sales figures also came out.

In Asia‚ stock markets were mostly higher but Japan’s Nikkei average ended the session flat‚ while the Hang Seng index was up 0.36% by 09:25 SA time.

Meanwhile‚ the eurozone concerns remain in focus after Moody’s Investors Service downgraded Italy’s government bond rating by two notches‚ putting it just two notches above junk territory‚ and warned of the possibility of further action. It pointed to the challenges Italy and the wider region face in tackling the debt crisis. - I-Net Bridge