March 23, 2012 / 5:48 AM / 5 years ago

South African Markets - Factors to watch on March 23

The following company announcements, scheduled economic indicators, debt and currency market moves and political events may affect South African markets on Friday.

DIARY

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For southern and South Africa diary, click on

ECONOMIC EVENTS

The finance ministers of South Africa, Nigeria and Angola called a news conference for Friday likely to address reports that they are backing Nigerian Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala to become President of the World Bank.

SOUTH AFRICAN STOCKS

South African stocks ended in the red for a third straight session on Thursday as concerns about Chinese growth hit miners and retailer Shoprite slid after it announced it would issue new shares and convertible bonds.

SOUTH AFRICAN RAND

South Africa’s government bonds rallied on Thursday after domestic inflation surprised the market to the downside, backing the case that the Reserve Bank might not have to increase interest rates after all this year.

GLOBAL MARKETS

Asian shares fell on Friday and growth-linked currencies such as the Australian dollar were shunned after data showing shrinking factory activity in China and the euro zone heightened concerns about a slowdown in the global economy.

WALL STREET

Cyclical sectors led U.S. stocks lower on Thursday, setting the S&P 500 up for its first negative week in six, after factory data showed a slowdown in both the euro zone and China.

GOLD

Gold prices was little changed on Friday and were set for their fourth-straight week of losses, after weak economic data from China and the euro zone sent bullion to a two-month low in the previous session.

EMERGING MARKETS

For the top emerging markets news, double click on

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Some of the main stories out in the South African press:

BUSINESS DAY

- New labour bills ‘threat to jobs’, says business

- Molewa calls on public to put pressure on miners

BUSINESS REPORT

- Basil Read eyes nuclear plant jobs

- Tightening of Iran oil tricky for SA (Reporting by Agnieszka Flak)

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