The JSE looks set to open to mixed Asian markets on Friday morning, with no news to give international markets a clear direction, while local attention remains on looting and violence.
SA business associations believe the damage done over the past week to businesses and infrastructure to be in the region of R10bn-R12bn, and there are concerns of food and medicine shortages due to ongoing supply chain disruptions and as bakeries and factories remain shuttered.
The rand has recovered somewhat from a sharp fall on both Monday and Tuesday, and was little-changed in early trade on Friday at R14.53/$. The rand has lost 2.37% against the dollar over the past five days.
The JSE remains positive so far this week and rand-hedges have fared well. Naspers has added about 8% since Monday.
Internationally, there is a risk-off tone on markets, with National Australia Bank analyst Tapas Strickland noting there was no obvious catalyst for a fall in US equities overnight.
In morning trade the Hang Seng was up 0.47%, Japan’s Nikkei had fallen 0.81%, while the Shanghai Composite was flat.
Tencent, which can give direction to the JSE via Naspers, had gained 0.53%.
Gold was flat at $1,827.32/oz while platinum was little changed at $1,136.35/oz. Brent crude was 0.2% up at $73.40 a barrel.
There is little on the local corporate or economic calendar on Friday, with focus instead expected to remain on updates from business on their operations, or damage to them.