South African Stocks Advance as Investors Cheer Vaccine News

South Africa’s main stock index halts a three-day slide, rises 1.4% by 9:52 a.m. in Johannesburg after progress on a Pfizer Inc. vaccine lifts global equities, and after U.S. stocks edged higher on rallying tech companies.

Investors’ risk appetite got a shot in the arm after China confirmed plans to discuss progress with the U.S. on their preliminary trade deal.

Friday’s gains trim the South African benchmark index’s first weekly losses in a month, with the gauge down 1.4% since Monday.

  • Index giant Naspers Ltd. rises for the first day in four, up 1.7% to provide biggest boost to the market, as partly owned Tencent Holdings Ltd. advances in Hong Kong following the U.S. tech-stock rally.
    • Naspers subsidiary Prosus NV, which holds the company’s 31% stake in Tencent, rises 1.9%
  • Gauge of mining stocks rises 0.4%, boosted by gains in platinum and gold producers
    • Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd. +3.7%, Anglo American Platinum Ltd. +3%, Anglo American Plc +0.4%, Northam Platinum Ltd. +2.6%, AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. +0.4%, Exxaro Resources Ltd. +1.9%, Harmony Gold Mining Co. +0.9%, African Rainbow Minerals Ltd. +1.7%
  • Index of bank stocks rises 1.6%
    • NOTE: Rand Gains as Traders Bet Easing Cycle Over: Inside S. Africa
    • FirstRand Ltd. +1.8%, Standard Bank Group Ltd. +1.2%, Capitec Bank Group Ltd. +3%, Absa Group Ltd. +0.8%, Investec Plc +2.1%
    • Nedbank Group Ltd. -1%; stock underperforms after bank says first-half earnings may fall as much as 72%
      • NOTE: Nedbank Sees 1H HEPS 67%-72% Lower y/y
  • Insurers rise 2.3%
    • Sanlam Ltd. +3%, Discovery Ltd. +2.4%, Old Mutual Ltd. +1.7%, Momentum Metropolitan Holdings +1.5%, Liberty Holdings Ltd., +1.4%
  • Foreigners remained net sellers of South African stocks for a ninth day Thursday, disposing of 78m rand worth of shares, according to exchange operator JSE Ltd.

NEWS:

  • S. Africa Has Policy Tools to Act on Virus Shock: Kganyago
  • Return of The Same Old Problems Can Stall South Africa’s Rebound

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