Strong rand will provide market with soft place to land
High oil prices are likely to persist for at least the next 12 months, given the current dynamics in the industry. For a greater part of the 1990s, oil prices ranged between $10 (R58 at Fridays exchange rate) and $25 a barrel. Over recent years, this trading band has shifted upwards, with prices now trading between $40 and $60 a barrel.
Rands fate unlikely to mirror current face of dollar
Since the past decade or so, the US has enjoyed both a strong domestic economy and currency against its major counterparts. There are a few reasons that could be ascribed to the continued strength of that economy, ranging from a strong consumer base or spending in a declining interest rate environment as a driver of corporate earnings, to productivity gains.
Not yet time to sell equities but added caution advised
The FTSE/JSE Africa all share index has appreciated by about 26 percent over the past year. But the return is distorted by a poor performance from resources and hides the strong achievements of the industrial and financial sectors, which rose 38 percent and 42 percent respectively. Given these price movements, many investors are asking whether now is the time to start selling South African equities.
Inflation drives the rates that steer equity valuations
The substantially higher-than-expected October US inflation data have aroused fears that the worlds top economy could be on the verge of an upward inflationary spiral. The data marks a 180¡ turn from as recently as March, when the threat of deflation a sustained period of falling prices was the main concern.
Debt is the necessary devil that keeps capitalism going
While its not wrong to pile advice upon advice on to consumers to avoid debt, sometimes the advice is chokingly too routine and unnecessary. Economic literacy is key in this instance, and individuals are well aware at all times of the consequences of debt servicing.
Rand likely to stay in range
Johannesburg The rand regained some ground on Friday, supported by offshore demand and renewed weakness in the dollar, with traders predicting a few rangebound sessions ahead of this weeks interest rate decision. By 5pm on Friday, the rand had inched up 0.87c on the day to be bid at R5.801 to the dollar, off its worst level of the day at R5.89.
Rand holds its ground ahead of interest rate decision
Johannesburg The rand held its ground in a tight range near a new six-year peak against the dollar yesterday, with traders keeping a wary eye on the greenback as they brace for the outcome of the Reserve Banks policy meeting later this week. At 5pm the rand was bid at R5.7188 to the dollar, 8.22c stronger than its previous close in Johannesburg, after retreating to R5.76 at one point.
Rand dips amid jostling ahead of interest rate decision
Johannesburg The rand weakened modestly yesterday, shrugging off news of a surge in the countrys reserves during November, as markets waited for the outcome of this weeks two-day monetary policy meeting. Early in the session the rand briefly firmed on news that South Africas net reserves leaped by nearly 14 percent to $11.02 billion in November, confirming that the central bank had stepped up the pace of buying foreign exchange last month.
Dollar flexes its muscles and whacks the rand lower
Johannesburg The rand beat a hasty retreat as the recovering dollar knocked it weaker yesterday, with markets nervously awaiting the outcome of the central banks monetary policy committee meeting. At 5pm the domestic unit was bid at R5.83 a dollar, about 7.6c weaker than its previous close in Johannesburg, after sliding as far as R5.90 at one point.
Bonds show disappointment at interest rate decision
Johannesburg The rand gained 1.75c against the dollar yesterday after the central bank decided to keep interest rates unchanged, leaving the units high-yield appeal intact, analysts said. But government bond yields trended softer amid disappointment with the monetary policy committees decision to leave the repo rate steady at 7.5 percent.
Profit taking expected to bite bourse as rate cut chances dim
Johannesburg Investors are expected to take profits on South Africas record-breaking stocks this week, as the chances of an interest rate cut by the Reserve Bank dim. But banks, led by Absa, and retail shares are expected to remain attractive. Hovering near six-year peaks around R5.7075 to the dollar, the rand could put a further dampener on the equities party.
Anglo American and Gold Fields pull broader market lower
Johannesburg Sharp falls in Anglo American and Gold Fields pushed the FTSE/JSE Top40 index 1.7 percent lower yesterday to 11 103.43. Anglo American fell as local investors sold the companys Johannesburg-listed stock, not needing the share in their portfolios after it was deleted from a key index by index compiler MSCI.
Surge from Sasol counteracts pressure from Harmony
Johannesburg Shares in energy group Sasol jumped more than 3 percent yesterday, pushing the FTSE/JSE Top40 index higher, despite a 5 percent fall in gold mining company Harmony Gold. The Top40 ended 0.15 percent higher at 11 119.99 and the FTSE/JSE Africa all share index inched up 0.06 percent to 12 313.
Gold producers lead bourse lower as bullion plummets
Johannesburg Shares fell yesterday, paced by Harmony and other gold producers, as bullion posted its biggest drop in 10 months. The FTSE/JSE Africa all share index declined 0.9 percent to 12 205.18 points as 76 stocks fell, 54 gained and 31 were unchanged.
The stronger rand knocks mining heavyweights back a rung
Johannesburg Equities nudged lower yesterday as a central bank decision to keep interest rates on hold pushed the rand higher, knocking heavyweight mining stocks down a rung. The FTSE/JSE Top40 index shed 0.54 percent to 10 958.12, while the FTSE/JSE Africa all share index slipped 0.48 percent to 12 146.2 points, notching up a second day of losses after a recent rally to historic highs.
DJ US Stocks Ease In Quiet Session; Sprint Trades Heavily
Delphi dropped 34 cents, or 3.9%, to 8.30. The auto-components maker plans to cut about 4.6% of its work force, or 8,500 jobs, and lowered its fourth-quarter financial outlook. Banc of America Securities said it expects home builders earnings to increase 16% in 2005 and 13% in 2006 despite an expected slowdown in the housing market.
DJ Stock Futures Report: End Near Flat Despite Oil´s Slide
CHICAGO (Dow Jones) -- Stock index futures ended Fridays session nearly flat, failing to get a lift from crude oils slide to below $41 a barrel. The March S&P and Nasdaq contracts closed slightly higher. Each contract traded in a narrow range even as traders monitored sharply lower crude oil prices.
Delphi bonds hit by job cut, earnings news
CHICAGO (AFX) Investors soured on bonds issued by leading auto supplier Delphi Corp. Friday after the company announced job cuts and said it expected a dent in its bottom line in the fourth quarter and next year.
UPDATE 9-Oil slumps below $41, dealers shrug OPEC cut
NEW YORK, Dec 10 (Reuters) Oil prices settled under $41 for the first time since July on Friday as dealers took profits on a widely expected move by the OPEC cartel to curb production in excess of its official output ceiling.
Electricity generation sees modest growth in 2003
WASHINGTON (AFX) -- Electricity generation in the United States saw modest growth in 2003 due to a cooler summer, but that did not prevent utilities from churning out a profit, according to a report from the Energy Department released Friday.
South Africas Rand in Weekly Drop as Gold and Platinum Prices Decline
Dec. 11 (Bloomberg) -- South Africas rand posted its first weekly drop versus the dollar in a month, after the prices of gold and platinum, which account for about a fifth of the nations exports, slumped.
Gold Fields: Harmony Reserve Statement delay
The board of Gold Fields notes with concern that Harmony appears to be delaying the disclosure of its independently audited Reserves and Resources Statement. In Harmony`s offer document, and in subsequent statements, Harmony promised that it would produce its Reserves Statement by early December 2004.
Gold Fields Board reject talks with Harmony
The board of directors of Gold Fields today, 09 December 2004, rejected suggestions made in the media by Harmony that the two companies should enter into friendly discussions. It is the Board`s view that Harmony`s offer, with only 11.8% acceptances, has already been overwhelmingly rejected by Gold Fields` shareholders and does not merit any further discussion.
Gold at one month-low on dollar strength
By Justin Brown Spot gold was lower on Friday afternoon and close to a one month-low as the US dollar remained strong against both the euro and the yen, analysts said. At 13h20 on Thursday, spot gold was quoted at $433.50/oz from Thursdays New York close of $437.30/oz.
Metals Market Commentary
As the white metals suffered a bit last week, the gold market continued its sharp rally as expected. This market is still almost entirely influenced by the US Dollar, which continues its death spiral, plumbing new lows virtually every day. While the US administration publicly maintains that its „strong Dollar“ is unwavering, the financial markets remain unconvinced. Comments by Dr.
Sunrise Market Commentary: Fixed Income
The market had lost quite some ground in recent weeks and seemed po-sitioned for a stronger payrolls report. However, November payrolls were much weaker than expected, the October and September payrolls revised lower, the length of the workweek shortened and average earnings were barely up. That took many traders awry and prices shot up.
Time to consign ranking tables to the investment dustbin
Performance track records, in general, and performance surveys in particular, have come under considerable attack of late, and rightly so.. The fundamental problem with using rankings of past performance has been that investors see rankings or even absolute returns as indicators of skill.
Stronger rand, cheaper oil give bank space to cut rates
The Reserve Bank raises some interesting points in its monetary policy review, released earlier this month. Some of these are worth highlighting. One interesting discussion is on the influence of commodity prices on the rand. The banks conclusion that commodity prices have a strong influence on the real effective exchange rate, and to some extent on local economic growth, is not news, but it comes at an interesting time.
Heed the calls for a rate cut and let the good times roll
Given the phenomenal resilience in the external value of the rand and the subsequent containment of domestic prices, calls for an interest rate cut are not without substance. The rand is markedly stronger than this time last year.
Lifes a bitch without hot showers, lights, music, morning coffee
Being without electricity for three days this week wasnt just not fun, it was horrifying. No morning cups of coffee, no music to numb your soul, no comforting hum from the fridge, and no hot showers. I found the only way to survive a cold shower was to yell throatily for the first minute.
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