IMF cutting growth forecasts results in SA stocks sliding
The Johannesburg Stocks Exchange index saw extended declines on Wednesday, falling to 0,2% amid weakness experienced in BHP and Anglo American, with fellow benchmark heavyweights such as Naspers and Richemont dropping substantially. These four stocks account for around 48% of the gauge by value, and these weaknesses experienced on Wednesday were as a result of the International Monetary Fund cutting the growth forecasts for South Africa, despite having raised the projection on global expansion. Stock markets are currently treading water near record highs, with investors seeking more clarity on the timeline United States’ President Joe Biden has set for the $1,9 trillion Covid- 19 relief plan, and anticipation towards the Federal Reserve monetary policy decision.
Naspers seeks ways to reduce its dominance of the JSE
Naspers, a global e-commerce operator, makes up almost a fifth of the bourse. It is looking for ways in which it can reduce the dominance it has over the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. Naspers continues to dominate the stock exchange even after it spanned off most of its assets into Amsterdam-listed Prosus in 2019. The stock has had a substantial boost this early in the year, gaining more than 18% and becoming the second-best performer on the FTSE/JSE Africa Top 40 index.
Wine producers to challenge alcohol ban in court
Vinpro, the wine producers’ body, is set to challenge the current ban on alcohol sales in court. According to government, this is the third blanket ban on the sale of alcohol, announced in December to try and keep hospital beds free of liquor-related trauma cases amid the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic. Vinpro advocates a more flexible and nimble approach based on empirical data, allowing the provincial executive to deal with the retail sale of liquor for the remainder of the pandemic.