The JSE is reaching close to all time highs again – does this mean stocks are expensive? Jaspers closed at R2,270 on Friday, possibly an opportunity to take profits. Banks are under pressure as Moody’s revises the outlook from Stable to Negative. The Reinet (REI) NAV update is disappointing at €5.2bn… and Bidvest is unbundling today.

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While the markets are positive, companies hitting the headlines is negative. Richmond reported a terrible set of results with the share falling 5.3% on Friday. Tongaat put out a trading statement saying HEPS would decline 18%. And Transaction Capital, who own SA Taxi, are looking to consolidate the taxi industry.

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What can we expect from the Rand after reports of Pravin Gordhan’s imminent arrest? The bidders are coming out of the woodwork for Barclays Africa Group. It’s time to buy Sun International… and finally, Anthea consolidates a listener’s portfolio.

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Normally a weaker Rand protects us from falling markets, but not even a 5% decline in the Rand for the week could save the equity market. Anthea has the latest for you including bringing a new look at her Rand Hedge strategy and why she deems Barclays her stand out performer of the week.

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Markets are volatile and seemingly sentiment driven. Steinhoff is getting into bidding wars for European businesses. Lewis might have to pay back money to consumers after being referred to the Consumer Tribunal. Also, did our Big Short work?

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Markets were strong on Friday, led by Industrials (+92bps), despite resources down 88bps. Lots of activity in the ICT sector, EOH have purchased Aptronix for R194m, and on the downside Dimension Data have brought an application to the high court naming 13 ICT providers.

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A good day on the exchange on Friday as almost all equity indices and the Rand showed signs of strength. Rand reached 15.01 after Treasury issued a 10yr maturity Dollar bond, which was 2x oversubscribed at 4.875%. Illovo sugar was up over 15% after Assoc British Foods raised their bid to R25 per share. Then, hear about the Finance Ministry approving a 34% increase on wheat import duties.

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The Rand has held its own, after the ConCourt decision, now trading close to pre-Nene levels. African Bank “re-launches” today with a cash position of R24bn. US non-farm payrolls surprised to the upside, printing 215k vs an expected 205k new jobs in March. If you’re a holder of Torre shares, you have an option to take the cash or scrip dividend, we recommend taking Scrip. Tesla was up over 5% on Friday after the release for the Model 3.

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Last week saw the JSE close strong after Futures and Options Close-out and the rate hike decision. $2.6bn was traded on Friday, after $4bn worth of shares changed hands on Thursday. Anthea and Gareth discuss the role of rating agencies and question the hype surrounding SA’s potential downgrade. On Friday Goldfields did an accelerated book build and issued 38.8m shares at R59.50 each.

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Buy on rumour, sell on fact… Old Mutual was up almost 12% since the rumour of them splitting up the business and down 3% on Friday after the results presentation. EOH reported results last week and remains a holding in our portfolio. Rand Merchant Insurance also released results showing that OUTsurance earnings grew 25% in 1H16. Meanwhile, it looks like we’re expecting a 25bps rate hike on Thursday when SARB MPC meet.

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