The reception area of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. File picture: Leon Nicholas

A strong rebound in resources underpinned the rise in the JSE on Friday after the release of upbeat Chinese GDP figures‚ which buoyed local commodities.

Banks were the only losers on a generally positive day. This after the rating agency Fitch downgraded South African banks on Wednesday.

At 5pm‚ the all share index was up 0.51% to 40‚165.53 points‚ with gold miners up 1.96% and resource stocks adding 1.10%‚ while banks dipped 0.41%.

Elsewhere‚ leading European stock market indices were firmer‚ with London’s FTSE 100 0.54% firmer at 4.50pm local time.

“We saw some good figures out of China today with fourth quarter GDP growth of 7.9%‚ which turned the resource sector around. Resources experienced huge sell-offs during the week after Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) announced the retrenchments of 14‚000 miners‚” said Hennie Fourie‚ stockbroker at PSG Konsult.

“Retailers were a mixed picture after having a torrid time the last week or so. They were too expensive and have come back after worse-than-expected trading updates during the week‚” he said.

On the JSE‚ Anglo American (AGL) added 1.58% to R269‚ Northam Platinum (NHM) was up 2.07% to R37 and Lonmin gained 2.51% to R47.35. Gold miner Gold Fields (GFI) added 2.48% to R107.96 and Harmony (HAR) lifted 2.14% to R66.94.

Among industrials‚ Bidvest (BVT) added 2.37% to R218 and AECI (AFE) gained 2.25% to R86.50.

Retailer Mr Price (MPC) closed down a further 1.03% at R120 after losing over 3% on Thursday on its worse-than-expected trading update. The Foschini Group (TFG) added 1.94% to R122.33 after releasing a fair trading update on Friday.

Among banking counters Standard Bank (SBK) gave back 1.41% to R117.12 and Absa (ASA) shed 2.56% to R161.75‚ while Capitec added 1.97% to R198.85.

Taste Holdings (TAS) improved 3.75% to after it said on Friday that its group system-wide sales were up 41% for the month of December when compared to December 2011. - I-Net Bridge