Futures track stronger JSE and positive global markets

South African futures were higher on Thursday, outperforming the JSE as global equity markets rose after upbeat European Central Bank (ECB) comments on the eurozone economy.

Stocks in the US and Europe rose on Thursday, and the euro jumped against the dollar, after the ECB left its monetary policy unchanged, while revising expected growth rates upwards, and inflation downwards, reported Dow Jones Newswires.

ECB president Mario Draghi’s concern over the strength of the euro was tempered by his expectation that “inflation will eventually converge, based on the good conditions of the economy”, the newswire said.

Local data releases disappointed, with mining production in July increasing 0.9%, less than expected. Manufacturing production shrank 1.4% in July from a year earlier, a bigger drop than expected.

After trading lower for most of the day, the all share reversed course to close 0.72% higher at 55‚878.2 points.

The blue-chip top 40 added 0.83%.

Banks gained 1.04%‚ industrials 0.92%‚ resources 0.63%‚ financials 0.42% and food and drug retailers 0.37%. The platinum shed 0.38%, and property 0.05%.

At 5.40pm, gold had gained 0.97% to $1,347.05 an ounce and platinum 1.14% to $1,012.52.

Brent crude was off 0.13% at R54.07.

The top-40 Alsi futures index was up 1.13% to 49,490 points. The number of contracts traded was 24,505 from Wednesday’s 27‚308.

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