The JSE had another tough session as it closed weaker on Friday as sentiment remained mostly bearish across all the major sectors.
The local bourse shrugged off gains in Asia where the Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.72%, the Hang Seng rose 0.5% while the Nikkei gained 0.4%. In Europe, indices tracked mostly lower with the exception of the FTSE 100 which advanced on the day. In the USA, stocks retracted in reaction to China's plans to impose tariffs on certain US goods. Locally, market participants are still being warded off stocks on the back of the current weak sentiment characterizing local retailers.
On the currency market, the rand made inroads against the greenback as it rose to a session high of R15.07/$ before it was recorded trading 0.83% firmer at R15.11/$ at 17.00 CAT.
A difficult session ensued for Massmart [JSE:MSM] which tumbled 7.81% to close at R40.26. Weakness was also recorded for Shoprite [JSE:SHP] which fell 3.61% to R116.29, Pick n Pay [JSE:PIK] which dropped 2.41% to R55.15, and The Spar Group [JSE:SPP] which closed at R171.24 after losing 1.26%. South32 [JSE:S32] continued to reel from its recent release of results which saw it lose another 5.87% in today's session to close at R25.16.
Exxaro Resources [JSE:EXX] fell 4.28% to close at R128.31, while Anglo American Platinum [JSE:AMS] lost 2.39% to close at R818.62. Other significant losers on the day included Imperial Logistics [JSE:IPL] which lost 2.72% to close at R48.25 and Discovery Ltd [JSE:DSY] which fell 2.32% to close at R104.54.
Gold miners had another session of gains which saw stocks such as Harmony Gold [JSE:HAR] climb 4.65% to close at R52.49, while Gold Fields [JSE:GFI] surged 2.68% to close at R89.37. Intu Properties [JSE:ITU] closed amongst the day's biggest gainers after advancing 8.71% to close at R6.49, while Tsogo Sun Hotels [JSE:TGO] gained 7.01% to closed R4.12. Other significant gainers on the day included Brait [JSE:BAT] which gained 3.75% to close at R15.20, Grindrod [JSE:GND] which rose 3.53% to close at R4.99, and Mr Price [JSE:MRP] which closed 2.42% higher at R155.12.
The JSE All-Share index eventually closed 0.37% softer while the JSE Top-40 index shed 0.39%. Financials dropped 0.59%, Industrials shed 0.43%, while the Resources index closed 0.23% weaker.
At 17.00 CAT, Palladium was down 1.29% at $1469.80/Oz, Gold had risen 1.46% to trade at $1519.99/Oz, and Platinum was up 1.17% to trade at $868.05/Oz.
Oil prices dipped further in today's session and the commodity was trading 1.02% weaker at $59.36/barrel just after the JSE close.