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

The JSE closed in the black on Thursday‚ with banks making most gains‚ while resource and gold miners lost ground due to labour issues in the sector and negative trading updates.

The retail sector closed 0.70% lower‚ after Mr Price dropped over 3% after issuing a worse-than-expected trading update late on Thursday afternoon.

“Retailers were improving earlier‚ having lost a lot of value over the last couple of days after some disappointing numbers in the sector. But the Mr Price trading update wiped off those gains‚” a local trader said.

At 5pm‚ the all share index closed 0.21% higher at 39‚964.56 points‚ with banks adding 1.45%‚ while gold miners shed 1.46% and resources gave back 0.60%.

At 4.46pm local time leading European markets were trading in positive territory with London’s FTSE 100 index 0.32% higher. The Dow Jones Industrial index was 0.24% higher at the same time.

Global investors are awaiting economic prints out of China on Friday‚ including the fourth quarter gross domestic product‚ which will give an indication of the health of the world’s second biggest economy‚ Dow Jones Newswires reported.

China's economy is expected to rise 7.8% from a year earlier in the final quarter of 2012‚ up from 7.4% growth in the third quarter‚ according to the median forecast of 17 economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires.

On the JSE‚ Anglo American (AGL) shed 1.85% to R264.81.

Anglo American Platinum (AMS) shed 2.44% to R447‚ while Impala Platinum (IMP) closed 1.32% higher at R168.90.

AngloGold Ashanti (ANG) shed 2.13% to R255.44 and Gold Fields (GFI) lost 1.40% to R105.35.

Mr Price dropped 3.31% to R121.25‚ after being up 1.68% just after noon‚ while Shoprite (SHP) added 1.92% to R186.01.

Vodacom (VOD) jumped 3.45% to R125.67 and Imperial (IPL) closed 2.14% stronger at R202.24. - I-Net Bridge