Asian Stocks Slip After U.S. Losses As Risk Appetite Wanes On Covid-19 Worries

13/11/2020 Not to sound like a broken record: Wall Street closed lower on Thursday as resurgence in coronavirus cases added to concerns that tougher restrictions may hamper the economic recovery without further stimulus. New York prepared for the possibility of school closures and Chicago urged residents to stay at home. Asian markets are taking cue from their U.S. counterparts on Friday, with markets in Japan underperforming amid a record spike in infections. The JSE tracked weaker global markets on Thursday, with both the All-share and Top-40 giving up 1% and 0.85% respectively at the close. The JSE is flat 0.09% YTD, while the Top-40 has managed to firm up 2.99% YTD. The local currency is flat 0.02% against the greenback at 15.6500. Gold futures edged up 0.14% to $1877.03, Brent crude off 1.47% to $42.89. American crude inventories rose by 4.28 million barrels, according to data from the IEA. The administration cut its global oil demand projections for this quarter by 1.2 million barrels a day in its latest monthly report. With Pfizer/BioNTech good news on the vaccine on Monday, my view is the current slump is the dark before dawn – buying opportunity.

NEWS:
• South Africa’s Unemployment Rate Swings Back to 17-Year High (1)
• Eskom Ordered to Rectify Pollution Issues at Three Power Plants
• Ace Magashule, the SG of ANC, is scheduled to appear in court in Bloemfontein on corruption charges.
• Virus Update : U.S. Cases Reach Record; Europe Hot Spots Easing
GOVERNMENT:
• 12 noon: Police Minister Bheki Cele will present crime statistics for the second quarter at a media briefing in Pretoria
CORPORATE EVENTS:
• Annual general meetings: ITE SJ, RCL SJ
• Earnings Calls: MCG SJ

EU/UK/US
European markets closed in the red on Thursday as investors took some profits following eight consecutive days of gains, amid a raft of corporate news, rise in covid-19 infections and the latest UK GDP reading. The pan-European Stoxx 600 index was down 0.88% , Germany’s Dax fell 1.24%, alongside a 1.52% drop for the Cac-40, while the FTSE100 closed down 0.68%. Office for National Statistics showed that the economy grew by a record 15.5% in the third quarter as lockdown measures were eased, but slowed in September.

The Dow closed 317.46 points, or 1.08%, lower on Thursday. The index took a break from heavy gains on the back of Pfizer and BioNTech’s news that its vaccine candidate had shown itself to be 90% effective. The S&P 500 lost 1% and the Nasdaq was off 0.65%. U.S. stock index futures are mixed as markets eye the spread of the corona virus: Dow futures flat -14 points or -0.05%, S&P 500 futures +2.5 points or -0.05%, Nasdaq futures +41.75 points or 0.35%. PPI statistics due today 15H30 local time.

ASIA
MSCI’s broadest index of Asian shares outside Japan dipped 0.25% in early trade as shares across the region stumbled. Chinese blue-chips led losses, with the Shanghai falling 0.95%. Hang Seng was lower 0.55%, Japan’s Nikkei losing 0.71%, while Australia’s ASX 200 gave up 0.27%.