Market Review, Commodities, Currencies, Economic & Corporate Update - 20.11.23

  • Market Overview

SOUTH AFRICA MARKET REVIEW

  • South African markets closed in the green on Friday, boosted by gains in metals and healthcare sector stocks.
  • Diversified miners, Anglo American (JO: AGLJ ), Kumba Iron Ore (JO: KIOJ ) and Exxaro Resources (JO: EXXJ ) advanced 2.7%, 2.2% and 1.1%, respectively.
  • Healthcare companies, Life Healthcare Group Holdings (JO: LHCJ ), Netcare (JO: NTCJ ) and Aspen Pharmacare Holdings (JO: APNJ ) rose 1.5%, 1.3% and 0.8%, respectively.
  • On the flipside, platinum miners, Anglo American Platinum (JO: AMSJ ), Northam Platinum (JO: NPHJ ) and Impala Platinum (JO: IMPJ ) shed 3.3%, 1.8% and 1.6%, respectively.
  • Lenders, Absa Group and Standard Bank Group (JO: SBKJ ) dropped 1.2% and 0.9%, respectively.
  • Gold miners, Sibanye Stillwater (JO: SSWJ ) and AngloGold Ashanti (JO: ANGJ ) eased 0.9% and 0.7%, respectively.
  • The JSE All Share index rose 0.2% to close at 73,920.75.

UK MARKET REVIEW

  • The UK market finished firmer on Friday, buoyed by gains in banking and retail sector stocks.
  • Banks, Standard Chartered (LON: STAN ), NatWest Group (LON: NWG ) and Barclays (LON: BARC ) gained 4.7%, 3.4% and 2.7%, respectively.
  • Home builders, British Land Co. (LON: BLND ), Barratt Developments (LON: BDEV ), Persimmon (LON: PSN ) and Berkeley Group Holdings (LON: BKGH ) climbed 4.5%, 3.2%, 2.1% and 1.6%, respectively.
  • Travel and leisure companies, InterContinental Hotels Group (LON: IHG ) and Whitbread (LON: WTB ) advanced 2.0% and 1.8%, respectively.
  • FirstGroup added 1.4%, after the company announced a joint venture with Japan's Hitachi for leasing up to 1,000 electric bus batteries for about GBP100.00mn ($123.90mn).
  • AstraZeneca (LON: AZN ) rose 0.9%, after the US health regulator approved its Truqap in combination with an older drug for a novel breast cancer.
  • The FTSE 100 index climbed 1.3% to close at 7,504.25.

US MARKET REVIEW

  • US markets ended higher on Friday, as investors assessed US Federal Reserve (Fed) official comments.
  • Apparel company, Gap (NYSE: GPS ) skyrocketed 30.6%, after the company posted better-than-expected results in 3Q23 helped by higher sales at Old Navy and easing supply expenses.
  • E-commerce company, Amazon.com (NASDAQ: AMZN ) gained 1.7%, after the company announced that it plans to cut jobs at its Alexa voice assistant unit, citing shifting business priorities and a greater focus on generative artificial intelligence.
  • Banking companies, American Express (NYSE: AXP ), JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE: JPM ). and Goldman Sachs Group (NYSE: GS ) added 2.2%, 0.9% and 0.8%, respectively.
  • The S&P 500 index rose 0.1% to settle at 4,514.02, while the DJIA index marginally advanced to close at 34,947.28.
  • The NASDAQ index added 0.1% to end the trading session at 14,125.48.

ASIA MARKET REVIEW

  • Asian markets are trading mostly higher this morning. In Japan, automobile company, Mazda Motor (TYO: 7261 ) Corporation has declined 4.6%.
  • On the flipside, pharmaceutical company, Sumitomo Pharma (TYO: 4506 ) Company has added 3.2%.
  • In Hong Kong, e-commerce company, JD.com (HK: 9618 ) has gained 3.8%.
  • On the other hand, optical products company, Sunny Optical Technology Group (HK: 2382 ) has eased 1.6%.
  • In South Korea, engineering company, SC Engineering (KS: 023960 ) has added 1.9%.
  • On the contrary, healthcare company HanAll Biopharma (KS: 009420 ) Company has edged down 3.5%.
  • The Nikkei 225 index is trading 0.1% lower at 33,562.41.
  • The Hang Seng index has advanced 1.5% to trade at 17,721.60, while the Kospi index is trading 1.0% higher at 2,494.01.

COMMODITIES

  • At 05:30 SAST today, Brent prices rose 0.7% to trade at $81.17/bl, amid prospects of further supply cuts.
  • On Friday, Brent prices rose 4.1% to settle at $80.61/bl, supported by the US sanctions on some Russian oil shippers and as the OPEC+ is set to consider additional supply cuts. Moreover, Baker Hughes reported that the US oil rigs count rose by 6 to 500 in the week ended 17 November 2023.
  • At 05:30 SAST today, gold prices advanced 0.1% to trade at $1,982.43/oz. On Friday, gold declined 0.1% to close at $1,980.01/oz.
  • On Friday, copper rose 0.6% to close at $8,168.05/mt. Aluminium closed 0.1% lower at $2,210.51/mt.

CURRENCIES

  • On Friday, the South African rand strengthened against the US dollar. In the US, both, building permits and housing starts rose in October, amid ease in recession fears.
  • The yield on benchmark government bonds rose on Friday. The yield on the 2030 bond advanced to 10.08% while that for the longer-dated 2040 issue rose to 12.21%.
  • At 05:30 SAST, the US dollar is trading 0.4% lower against the South African rand at R18.2752, while the euro is trading 0.4% lower at R19.9617. At 05:30 SAST, the British pound has declined 0.3% against the South African rand to trade at R22.8094.
  • On Friday, the euro advanced against most of the major currencies. In the eurozone, the consumer price inflation remained unchanged in October, amid weaker energy costs along with a slowdown in food prices. In the UK, retail sales unexpectedly dropped in October, as higher interest rates hurt spending ahead of the festive season.
  • At 05:30 SAST, the euro advanced 0.1% against the US dollar to trade at $1.0924, while it has gained 0% against the British pound to trade at GBP0.8754.

ECONOMIC UPDATES

  • In the UK, retail sales unexpectedly dropped 0.3% on a MoM basis in October, compared to a revised drop of 1.1% recorded in the prior month.
  • In the eurozone, seasonally adjusted current account surplus widened to EUR31.20bn compared to a revised surplus of EUR30.80bn recorded in the prior month.
  • In the eurozone, the consumer price index (CPI) rose 0.1% on a MoM basis in October, in line with market expectations and compared to a 0.3% rise recorded in the prior month.
  • In the US, building permits rose 1.1% in October, compared to a revised fall of 4.5% recorded in the previous month.
  • In the US, housing starts climbed 1.9% on a MoM basis in October. Housing starts had registered a revised rise of 3.1% in the previous month.

CORPORATE UPDATES

SOUTH AFRICA

  • Sanlam Limited (JO: SLMJ ): The insurance company, in its operational update for the nine months ended 30 September 2023, revealed that net operational earnings increased by 35.0% as compared with the previous year. Whereas group new business volumes increased by 13% as compared with the previous year. Life insurance new business volumes are 8.0% higher on a present value of new business premiums (PVNBP) basis.
  • Sasol Limited (JO: SOLJ ): The energy company announced the appointment of Mr Simon Baloyi as the President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and executive director, with effect from 1 April 2024, succeeding Mr Fleetwood Grobler.
  • Oil improves slightly after big drop earlier in the week: Oil prices edged higher, a day after sinking 5.0% to a four month-low on growing worries about burgeoning non-OPEC supply and cooling demand.

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