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Morning report (10.5)

09 May 2004 Angelo Coppola

Local equities weathered the storm fairly well on Friday, except platinum stocks which plunged 2%, reports Nico Kelder, economist at the Efficient Group.

The currency set off on a new rollercoaster ride after the close of local markets and weakened by almost 2% against the greenback and pound, while finding some strength against the euro.

The dollar made gains against the euro and the yen. Bond yields rose on Friday as higher interest rates become more likely. Gold and platinum dropped a few dollars (losing around 2% each) as the dollar strengthened and oil continued its upward march. European markets closed slightly lower while US markets came tumbling down by more than 1%.

Markets in the Far East continued this negative trend: the Nikkei lost 3.6-percent and the Hang Seng slightly better off with a loss of 2.8%.

The assassination of the leader of Chechnya over the weekend will heighten fears of terror attacks weighing, already depressed, markets down even more. We expect the markets to trade lower today.

Quick Polls

QUESTION

There are countless articles written about South Africa’s poor retirement outcomes. Which of the following would you single out as the biggest contributor to local savers not accumulating enough to buy an adequate and sustainable pension?

ANSWER

Lack of personal accountability
Poor participation in formal retirement funds
Reluctance to seek financial advice early on
SA’s high unemployment rate
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