Africa-Press – South-Africa. JOHANNESBURG – SOUTH African stocks rallied to a three-week high yesterday as optimism around a swift economic recovery was helped by massive stimulus spending and vaccination campaigns and a better-than-expected outlook.
The JSE All Share Index rose as much as 1.23 percent to 68 063 index points yesterday, its highest level since March 12, following its global peers after a long Easter weekend.
Anchor Capital’s Seleho Tsatsi said the JSE this year had been driven by a combination of outperformance by South African facing businesses and the continuation of the bull market in the resources sector.
“Several of the best performing shares year-to-date and in the month of March were among the worst affected companies last year,” Tsatsi said.
“We have seen so-called cyclical shares outperform globally this year and to a degree that has been true in South Africa too.”
The government yesterday signed an agreement with Pfizer for 20 million dual-shot Covid-19 vaccine doses, boosting plans to start mass vaccinations from April.
The first batch from Pfizer is expected to arrive later this month, meaning that the government will have enough to vaccinate roughly 41 million people out of its total population of 60 million.
South Africa’s Covid-19 infection rates have remained low in the run-up to Easter, but health authorities remain cautious over a possible third wave of infections.
A new variant with the most divergent mutations was also found in travellers from Tanzania.
However, the International Monetary Fund revised South Africa’s growth prospects for 2021 upwards, from 2.8 to 3.1 percent, due to stronger-than-expected global economic rebound of 6 percent.
Meanwhile, the rand remained steady at more than a one-month high yesterday as the dollar softened and Treasury yields retreated.
The rand was little changed at 0.02 percent to R14.53 against the greenback, its highest level since February 25, as investors focus on prospects of a global recovery.