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The JSE fell to a six-week low on Wednesday, in an action-packed session dominated by the speculator collapse in the share price of Steinhoff after long-serving CEO Markus Jooste quit amid fresh claims of accounting irregularities. The All Share closed 1.64% lower.
The Dow opened flat amid mixed European markets. The Dow was 0.03% off soon after the JSE’s close.
European stocks dropped on Wednesday, with tech and mining shares fronting broad-based losses across the region, setting blue chips on course for a second consecutive decline. The FTSE 100 added 0.46%, but the DAX 30 dropped 0.6%.
Hong Kong stocks posted their biggest single-day loss in over a year on Wednesday, with sentiment hurt by a tumble in index heavyweight Tencent and simmering worries over North Korea. At close of trade, the Hang Seng index was down 2.14%.
Japan’s Nikkei share average posted its biggest fall in 8 1/2 months on Wednesday as investors rushed to lock in gains after it broke below the key technical support from its 25-day moving average. The Nikkei share average fell 2%.
The rand weakened further on Wednesday afternoon, leading the losses among other emerging-market currencies. At 15h05 the rand was at R13.52 to the dollar from R13.44‚ at R15.98 to the euro from R15.90 and at R18.08 to the pound from R18.07.
Gold prices held near a two-month low on Wednesday, ahead of a vote over the US tax reform plan but a potential government shutdown lent support. Spot gold was steady at $1 266.20 an ounce by 13h10 GMT.
Oil fell 2% on Wednesday after a sharp rise in US inventories of refined fuel suggested demand may be flagging, while US crude production hit another weekly record. Brent crude futures were down $1.23, or 2%, at $61.63 a barrel by 16h21 GMT.
Source: Reuters, Business Day, Trading Economics
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