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Market Commentary | The week that was

Sanral's R28 billion tender initiative to revitalize the South African construction sector: Sanral, the South African National Roads Agency, is set to introduce R28 billion worth of tenders into the market by the end of March 2024, aiming to boost South Africa's construction industry. CEO Reginald Demana announced plans to issue 70 additional tenders, including significant projects like the N2 Section 34 improvement and the Moss Kolnik-Umlazi Canal. This initiative follows the resolution of legal challenges against Sanral's procurement policies, leading to the re-issue of 86 road construction tenders worth R7.2 billion.

India overtakes Hong Kong to become the fourth-largest global stock market: India has surpassed Hong Kong to become the world's fourth-largest stock market, with its market capitalization reaching $4.33 trillion. This growth is driven by a sturdy retail investor base and corporate earnings in India, contrasting with the decline in Hong Kong's market due to China's stringent policies and geopolitical issues. Despite potential forecasts of a rebound in Chinese stocks, India attracts significant foreign investment, with over $21 billion in 2023, highlighting its emerging prominence in the global equity market.

Netflix's Historic 10-Year Agreement to Stream WWE's "Raw": Netflix and TKO Group Holdings have struck a 10-year deal, valued at over 5 billion dollars, for Netflix to stream WWE's "Raw" starting next year. This venture is Netflix's first considerable entry into live sports broadcasting. The agreement includes global streaming rights for "Raw" and exclusive rights in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, and Latin America. Additionally, Netflix will host other WWE shows and specials outside the United States. This move aims to diversify Netflix's content and increase revenue, reaching its roughly 250 million global subscribers.

Markets: The South African rand held steady at R18.78 to the US dollar as investors awaited the Federal Reserve's policy meeting for rate direction. Risk appetite is low due to tensions in the Middle East, where three US soldiers died in Jordan. The stock market declined, with the Top 40 index down 0.52% and the all-share index 0.6% lower. The 2030 government bond yield in South Africa edged down to 9.755%.

Week Ahead: South Africa will report private sector credit today, and the Euro Zone will release GDP growth data. On Wednesday, China will announce its NBS manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI), South Africa will disclose its trade balance, and the United States will make its Federal Reserve rate decision. On Thursday, the Euro Zone will report the consumer inflation rate, and the United Kingdom will announce the Bank of England's interest rate decision. The week concludes on Friday with the United States revealing nonfarm payrolls and the unemployment rate.

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