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Local markets – 22.1

22 January 2004 ANgelo Coppola

After two days of weakness, the JSE Securities Exchange SA (JSE) shrugged off a stronger rand to bounce into the black yesterday, helped by basket buying by futures players and bottom fishing by investors.

Shares at the top end of the market performed particularly well. The All Share Index finished 0,82% firmer, Resources rallied 1,43%, with the Gold and Platinum Mining indices jumping 1,87% and 2,44% respectively.

Industrials ticked up 0,37%, financials firmed 0,28% and the banks were 0,75% in the black.

There was a lot of futures activity, which boosted volumes and helped push the market up. He said, however, that investors were also looking to pick up cheap stock after the JSE's declines over the past two days.

Based on the expectation of a weakening in the rand going forward and better economic prospects and good corporate profits, one can build a fairly good case for equities.

Bonds ended mixed yesterday after the news that Lesatja Kganyago was the new director-general of the Treasury. His appointment was widely expected.

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