Daily Report 07 December

SA Company News:

The JSE All Share Index closed 0.3% higher at 71 016. The mobile operator, MTN has joined a growing group of corporates that will enforce mandatory vaccination policies for staff from 2022. The telecommunications company, which employs around 6 000 people in South Africa, said that the new vaccine policy forms part of its legal obligations to provide a safe workplace. The policy also recognises the right of employees to apply to be exempted from the policy and/or refuse vaccination on certain clearly defined grounds, MTN said. Nampak released its results for the year to end-September. Revenue rose 24% to R14bn due to good performance by its metal division. The metals unit makes up more than 70% of group revenue. Nampak reported group profit of R377m, from a loss of R4.3bn previously. Sanlam and Alexander Forbes have announced two transactions involving the companies’ buying divisions from each other. Sanlam will pay R200 million for Alexander Forbes’ individual client administration business, which will become part of its Glacier subsidiary and Alexander Forbes will be buying Sanlam’s large stand-alone retirement fund administration operations for R154 million.  Nedbank expects its full year headline earnings per share to be up by more than 90% for the year ending December 31. Nedbank will release its results on 9 March 2022. 

SA Economy:

In a national address on 28 November, President Cyril Ramaphosa said that government plans to introduce mandatory vaccinations. Civil rights groups Afriforum and Sakeliga, have threatened legal action if the government moves ahead on its plans to introduce vaccine mandates, citing Constitutional issues. The Department of Health has blocked access to vaccination data for researchers from the South African Medical Research Council, which may lead to delays in understanding how the Omicron variant, currently driving new infections in South Africa, could respond to vaccines. The blockage is reportedly due to confidentiality issues.

Global Economy:

China’s central bank said it would cut the amount of cash that banks must hold as reserves, releasing 1.2 trillion yuan ($188.24 billion) in long-term liquidity to bolster slowing economic growth. The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) said it would cut the reserve requirement ratio (RRR) for banks by 50 basis points effective from 15 December. China’s trade surplus decreased by $71.72 billion in November 2021 from $74.25 billion in the same month a year earlier, far below market forecasts of $82.75 billion, due to weakening global demand. Retail sales in Britain increased 1.8% in November 2021 on a like-for-like basis from a year earlier, turning positive from a 0.2% fall in the previous month as consumers started shopping early for the holiday season.

Global Company News:

In India, the BSE Sensex fell 1.65% to close at 56 747 amid fears of spread of the heavily mutated Omicron virus as the country reported more new cases of this COVID variant. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was 1.85% firmer at 35 227 points. In Europe, London’s FTSE 100 had gained 1.54% to 7 232. Asian stocks opened higher this morning as investors took heart from strong rebounds on Wall Street on hopes that the newest coronavirus variant will prove less dangerous than previously feared. Shares in property developer Evergrande was up 1.7% after hitting a record low yesterday as markets awaited to see if the real estate company will pay the $82.5 million with the 30-day grace period coming to an end.

Commodities:

Gold lost 0.26% to $1 778/oz, while platinum gained 0.74% to $935/oz. Brent crude was firmer at $73.58 a barrel.

Currencies:

Investors have been turning to the US dollar recently as they see the Federal Reserve tightening monetary policy faster than other major central banks. The rand traded at R15.90 against the US Dollar, R21.14 against British Pound and R17.99 against the Euro. The euro trading at $1.129, remaining close to its weakest level since July 2020, amid concerns over Europe’s slowing economic growth.

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Market Indicators

Commodities $ Cross Currencies ($) Major Indices
Gold 1778,91 -0,26% USD/ZAR 15,90 Top40 64598,00 0,45%
Platinum 935,05 0,74% GBP/ZAR 21,14 Dow 30 35227,03 1,84%
Brent 73,58 4,99% EUR/ZAR 17,99 S&P 500 4591,67 1,16%
Copper 4,31 0,13% EUR/USD 1,13 FTSE 7232,28 1,52%
Palladium 1855,50 2,26% USD/JPY 113,71 DAX 15380,79 1,37%
Iron Ore 99,00 0,00% BITCOIN 50096,00 Shanghai 3586,71 -0,30%
Source:  Moneyweb & Investing.com