The Nikkei share average climbed to a 4½-week high on Tuesday on the back of a weaker Yen which slipped to a seven-month low against the US Dollar, boosting the share prices of exporters on speculation of an increase to earnings, while a planned cabinet reshuffle by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe also lifted investor sentiment.
The Hang Seng Index dropped to a three-week low on Tuesday, dragged down by profit-taking above the 25,000-points level, while the shares on mainland China inched slightly higher on the back of outperforming port and liquor stocks.
According to Reuters, European markets started the month of September slightly higher on Monday, supported by speculation over mergers and acquisitions with British broadcaster ITV gaining 2.5% on reports that Liberty Global Plc was canvassing support from major ITV shareholders following its 6.4% acquisition and raising speculation of a full takeover bid, while investors also expect new monetary stimulus measures from the ECB after its meeting later this week.
U.S. markets were closed on Monday for the Labour Day holiday.
The Business Day website reports that the JSE All Share ended broadly firmer on Monday, except for platinum and resource shares, with not much to drive the local market in the absence of Wall Street, which was closed for the Labour Day holiday, while diversified industrial group Bidvest was the best performing share after announcing plans of a separate London listing for its international food business to access cheaper capital.
The Rand was last trading weaker at R10.7080 against the US Dollar, with the Euro quoted at R14.0496, while the British Pound was also quoted weaker at R17.7268.
The gold price slipped to its lowest level in almost a week in Singapore on Tuesday on the back of a stronger US Dollar which outgunned lower equity markets and increased tensions in Ukraine. Gold was last trading lower at $1,283.01, with the platinum price at $1,416.90, while the palladium price was last trading at the $906.20 level.
Brent was last trading lower at $102.76 a barrel.