Market News 24/10/2014
Local shares ended in the red on Thursday as they were dragged lower by mining companies and MTN. MTN was the biggest decliner on the Top-40, having slipped more than 4% after slashing its full-year forecast for Nigerian subscriber growth by nearly a third. Mr. Price on the other hand was the top performer, jumping nearly 4% on a rise in first-half diluted headline earnings to as much as 351.7 cents per share from 283.6 cents a year ago. The Top-40 index slipped 0.26% to 42,921 while the All-share lost 0.2% to 48,104.
Gold dipped for a 3rd session this morning, headed for a weekly loss, as a firmer U.S. dollar and robust economic data dented the metal's appeal as a hedge. Spot gold eased 0.1% to $1,230.48/oz, after slipping by over 1% in the previous 2 sessions. The metal is headed for a weekly loss of 0.6%, its first drop in 3 weeks. Brent crude oil jumped nearly 3% yesterday after an industry source said Saudi Arabia cut output in September following the summer's tumble in prices. Brent settled up $2.12, or 2.5% higher, at $86.83 barrel.
Yesterday saw the rand firm towards the 10.90 resistance level as investors continued to see Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene's interim budget in a positive light. The market has reacted well to the interim budget on Wednesday, with analysts saying they were pleasantly surprised by his commitment to reducing spending and supporting struggling state-owned companies without putting pressure on the budget. The rand firmed to 10.9235 on the day, its best since September 17.
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