File Photo: The JSE yesterday reported an 18percent decline in first-half earnings to R419million compared with R513m in last year’s first half.

JOHANNESBURG - It said its performance was “resilient against the backdrop of a tough operating environment”. 

Operating revenue dropped 8 percent to R1.1 billion compared with R1.2bn last year with total expenses at R644m compared with R636m last year. 

The JSE said the country’s low economic growth, rating downgrades and a loss of business confidence had negatively impacted financial market activity this year. 

Global securities exchanges and other players in the financial services industry were changing the way in which they operated in response to regulatory and technological developments.

“The fast pace of this change requires us to adjust the way in which we operate so that we are as nimble and as cost effective as possible. To do this, we have announced measures to significantly re-engineer our cost base, our operating model and the way we are structured,” the JSE said. Earnings before interest and tax declined 20 percent to R453m compared with R567m in the previous comparable period. Earnings a share dropped 18 percent to 490.9cents compared with 599.7c and headline earnings a share declined 16 percent to 488.9c compared with 585.1c in the first half of last year. 

The JSE said it worked hard to limit cost growth to 1percent and that it remained cash generative with a strong cash balance of R2bn. 

The company is also likely to retrench 60 of its full-time staff members this year.