Dow slides 240 points | 3-week losing streak on Wall Street

21/09/2020 The dollar began Monday on the back foot after weakening last week, while U.S. and European futures are lower around the globe. Asian equities are slipping amid subdued trading volumes impacted by a holiday in Japan, with Tencent trading 1.6% lower in HK. The JSE Top 40 futures indicating a lower start, down 470 points, or 0.9%.
Locally the FTSE/JSE Africa All-Share Index closed down 0.7% to 54,673, with the bank, retail and property sectors weighing the most, down 2.7%, 2.6% and 2.04% respectively. Turnover were high as the the Quarterly Index Rebalancing which took place on Friday pumped up volumes. The Rand was down 0.5% to 16.23 vs the USD and is currently weakening further, last at 16.32, with the Yield on 10 year govt rand bonds that rose 1.0 bps to 9.192%.
South Africa’s State Capture inquiry resumes with testimony from Head of Department at Human Settlement, Nthimotse Mokhesi, from the Free State Provincial Government regarding 1 billion rand housing project. Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement Secretary General, Wamkele Mene delivers keynote address at Stellenbosch-based Tralac Trade Law Centre Conference.
• (FP FP): Total CEO Meets Mozambican Leader Over Escalating Insurgency
• S. Africa Central Bank Sees GDP Growing 45.2% in Third Quarter
• South Africa Seeks SAA Rescue Funds From its Own Agencies
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EU/UK
The pan-European Stoxx 600 ended 0.6% lower, with most sectors and major bourses in negative territory. Travel and leisure stocks dropped more than 3.4% to lead losses, while healthcare stocks rose 0.5%. Cases of Covid-19 have now passed 30 million worldwide, resulting in more than 946,000 deaths. The World Health Organization warned on Thursday of a “very serious situation” arising in Europe as cases rise significantly across the continent, forcing a reimplementation of lockdown measures in certain regions. London’s FTSE100 ended the session down 0.71%, with Paris’ CAC-40 losing 1.2%, while the German DAX saw the session out 0.70% lower. In corporate news, the boards of Spanish lenders Caixabank and state-owned Bankia have approved a merger plan that will create the country’s largest bank. Swiss drugmaker Roche announced Friday that a study had indicated that one of its drugs reduced the likelihood of patients with Covid-19 related pneumonia requiring a ventilator. On the data front, British retail sales rose by 0.8% in August, continuing a steady incline and slightly outpacing average economist expectations.
US
Stocks fell on Friday to end a volatile week as investors continued to dump shares of high-flying tech companies. The Dow Jones slid 244 points, or 0.9%, to 27,657. The S&P 500 dropped 1.1% to 3,319, with the Nasdaq that fell 1.1% and closed at 10,793. The S&P 500 hit its lowest level of the month on Friday after reaching an all-time high on Sept. 2. The major averages fell for a third straight week, notching their longest weekly losing streaks since last year. The Dow posted a slight week-to-date loss. The S&P 500 lost 0.7% and the Nasdaq dropped 0.6% over that time period. Shares of Apple dropped more than 3% on Friday. Microsoft and Alphabet pulled back by 1.2% and 2.4%, respectively. Netflix dipped 0.1%. Facebook fell 0.9%. Friday’s moves came as a series of individual stock, ETF and index options expired, potentially adding to some of the session’s volatility. Tensions between China and the U.S. also dampened market sentiment after the U.S. government said it will block all TikTok and WeChat downloads in the country on Sunday. Oracle, which is trying to take a minority stake in TikTok-parent ByteDance, fell 0.7%.
ASIA
Hong Kong shares underperformed as HSBC Holdings Plc’s shares fell to the lowest since 1995, dragging the Hang Seng Index about 1% lower. Equities in China and Australia also slipped, while trade data showing a continuing recovery for South Korea’s economy lent some support in Seoul. Japan’s stock market is shut dur to a holiday. The Hang Seng is down 1.4% (Tencent down 1.6%) with the Shanghai slipping 0.59%. In OZ the ASX 200 trades 0.71% lower, with the Metals & Mining Index shedding 1.39%. As U.S.-China tensions linger, President Donald Trump said he’s approved Oracle Corp.’s bid for the U.S. operations of TikTok “in concept.” The Trump administration’s curbs on WeChat were put on hold by a judge, upending an effort to halt use of the Chinese-owned app in the U.S.
COMMODITIES
Oil steadied following its biggest weekly gain since June as a lack of clarity over the global energy demand recovery was balanced by the possibility that Saudi Arabia could press for more OPEC+ output cuts. Futures in New York traded near $41 a barrel after rising 0.3% Friday, with Gold $1,954.01 an ounce, up 0.2%. Platinum and Palladium are trading higher, with Copper also higher.