South Africa Stocks Edge Higher as Upgrades Boost Bidvest, Tiger

South Africa’s main stock benchmark index erased losses of as much as 0.4% to edge 0.2% higher by 9:57 a.m. in Johannesburg, as gains in shares upgraded by analysts and a recovery in gold and platinum companies countered weakness in index giants Richemont and Naspers Ltd.

A rally in global equities triggered by the formal start of President-elect Joe Biden’s transition to power cooled Wednesday, with investors weighing optimism spurred by vaccine and political developments against a still challenging economic outlook amid the pandemic. An index of emerging-market stocks was 0.4% lower.

Bidvest Group Ltd., up 3.3%, and Tiger Brands Ltd., which gained 4.5%, were among stocks providing the strongest support to the Johannesburg benchmark index following upgrades by analysts to their recommendations on the companies.

  • NOTE: Bidvest Raised to Overweight at Nedbank CIB; PT 195 rand
  • NOTE: Tiger Brands Raised to Hold at HSBC; PT 201 rand
  • Sasol Ltd. advanced for a third day, up 2.5% to the highest intraday level in more than seven weeks, as crude oil prices climbed.
  • Gauge of mining stocks extended gains for a fourth day, rising 0.3%.
    • BHP Group Plc +0.7%, Glencore Plc +1.2%,
      • Sub-index of gold stocks rose for the first day in three, up 0.3% as a weaker rand countered falling bullion prices
        • Gold Fields Ltd. +0.2%, Harmony Gold Mining Co. +0.5%, DRDGold Ltd. +0.3%
      • Sub-index of platinum companies up 0.5%
        • Sibanye Stillwater Ltd. +1%, Northam Platinum Ltd. +0.5%, Anglo American Platinum Ltd. +0.1%
  • Richemont declined for the first day in three, down 0.8% to provide biggest drag on the index.
  • Naspers, with a 19% weighting in the benchmark, retreated for a second day, down 0.1% as partly owned Tencent Holdings Ltd. declined in Hong Kong
    • Naspers subsidiary Prosus NV, which holds the company’s 31% stake in Tencent, declines 0.8%
  • Index of bank stocks halted a two-day rally, falling 0.4% as the rand weakened
    • NOTE: Rand Pauses After Reaching Nine-Month High: Inside South Africa
    • Capitec Bank Holdings Ltd. -2.3%, Standard Bank Group Ltd. -0.7%, Absa Group Ltd. -0.9%, Nedbank Group Ltd. -1.3%
  • Insurers -0.2%
    • Discovery Ltd. -0.5%, Sanlam Ltd. -0.2%, Momentum Metropolitan Holdings -0.9%
  • Foreigners remained net sellers of South African stocks for a seventh consecutive day Tuesday, disposing of 239 million rand worth of shares, according to exchange operator JSE Ltd.

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