JSE parity for black, white investors

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Johannesburg - Black investors hold similar stakes in listed companies as white investors, according to research released on Thursday.

The research focused on ownership of the top 100-listed companies.

“This year's study found a similar participation level among black and white South African investors - 21 percent and 22

percent of the Top 100 by value respectively,” said JSE CEO Nicky Newton-King.

“We also think one can assume that the black economic interest will continue to climb in future, and that this research provides a base for future measurement.”

If the methodology allowed by the Black Economic Empowerment Codes of Good Practice was applied, black shareholding rose to 33

percent.

“This is principally due to the fact that listed companies who own businesses in multiple countries are allowed to exclude the value of these foreign business operations from the calculation of black economic interest,” said researcher Trevor Chandler.

Foreign investors hold 34 percent of the market, while a further two percent was held directly by the government.

Most shares - 40 percent - are owned by institutional investors such as pension funds and life insurance companies, according to the research.

Only 24 percent of shares are held directly by South African individuals.

By excluding foreign and government stakes, the proportion of black investors in the remaining categories could be calculated.

This year's study had been more comprehensive than in the past two years, accounting for an increase in the numbers of black investors, said Chandler.

He declined to put a value on total black shareholding, as share and exchange values changed daily and the JSE's biggest companies had multiple listings across the world. - Sapa

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