South Africa's Exchange Posts Trading Record After Nene Fired

  • Number of equity trades exceeds previous record by 6 percent
  • Value of stocks traded second-highest on record, JSE says

The Johannesburg Stock Exchange recorded a record number of trades on Thursday after President Jacob Zuma fired his finance minister, sparking a market rout.

Most trades were “brewed locally” and not driven by foreign selling, the exchange said in an e-mailed response to questions. Bank stocks accounted for 17 percent of trades, it said.

The bourse reported 511,445 trades on its equity market, 6 percent higher than the previous record of 483,395 recorded on April 28. The value of stocks traded on Thursday was the second-highest on record at 47.9 billion, just short of the record of 53.9 billion rand reached in December 2014 and almost two-and-a-half times the daily average value of 20 billion this year.

South Africa’s banking index plummeted the most since October 2001 on Thursday, wiping out $8.6 billion in share value, after Zuma fired Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene and replaced him with little-known lawmaker David van Rooyen. The All Share Index fell as much as 2.4 percent and traded 1.4 percent lower at 48,278.59, the lowest since Aug. 27, by 12:26.m. in Johannesburg.

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