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The JSE fell on Wednesday as increasing numbers of virus infections in Europe, coupled with slow vaccine rollout programmes, sparked concerns over a delay in the global economic recovery.
Wall Street opened firmer after multinational tech giant Intel announced its plans to spend $20 billion on new chip plants but markets soon reversed course as concerns about the cost of infrastructure spending and possible tax increases to fund the $1.9 trillion relief bill took centre stage.
European stocks fell on Wednesday as reinforced lockdown restriction across the continent and slow Covid-19 vaccine rollout programmes weighed on sentiment. At the close of business, the FTSE 100 lost 0.25%.
Apprehensions over possible inflation rate hikes and policy tightening weighed on the Hong Kong stock market on Wednesday with the Hang Seng reaching its lowest in two months at 27 918.14 points.
The Nikkei ended Wednesday 2.04% lower with energy counters leading the decline as oil prices continued to fall amid new lockdown restrictions across Europe.
The rand weakened against major global currencies on Wednesday as the world braced for a third wave of Covid-19 infections. At 19h30, the local currency traded at R14.98/$, R20.41/£ and R17.70/€.
Spot gold traded at $1 733.90 an ounce at 19h30 on Wednesday as higher US Treasury yields and a firmer dollar continued to weigh on demand.
Brent crude jumped over 6% trading at $64.34 a barrel at 19h45 on Wednesday “after a ship ran aground in the Suez Canal, raising supply concerns”.
Source: Reuters, Business Day, Trading Economics
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