JOHANNESBURG - The main stock indexes closed at record highs yesterday as investors, taking their cue from emerging market peers, piled into everything from banks and miners to telecoms.
The benchmark JSE Top40 index gained 0.48percent to 50786.4 points, a record closing high. The all share index added 0.44percent 56999.79 points.
Vodacom topped the gainers’ list on the benchmark index, recouping some of the losses suffered their previous session after the anti-trust watchdog said it was investigating it for abuse of market dominance. Vodacom gained 2.17percent to close at R154.65.
“Generally analysts are brushing aside this inquiry by the Competition Commission,” said David Shapiro, a trader at Sasfin Securities. Barclays Africa Group rose 1.74percent to R142.05, while FirstRand gained 1.57percent to R52.40.
Overall, investors took their cue from an upbeat tone its emerging markets peers, which have notched up four straight day of gains. In the foreign exchange market, the rand weakened after the central bank expressed concerns about the economy late on Wednesday, while firmer dollar added to the bearish sentiment.
At 5pm, the rand was bid at R13.6341 to the dollar, 5.06c softer than at the same time on Wednesday.. The central bank said the economy was growing much less than it should be and was unlikely to reach 2-percent annual expansion in the short term because of political and policy uncertainty.
In fixed income, the yield for the benchmark government bond due in 2026 was up.