Amplats Will Sell Off Mines to Make Up for Platinum Strike Losses

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Anglo American Platinum Ltd. (AMS) said it would be willing to sacrifice its status as the world’s largest producer of the metal as it puts some mines up for sale, Bloomberg News reported.

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Amplats is seeking buyers for four mines and possibly stakes in two joint ventures after first-half profit dropped 88 percent because of a five-month pay strike, it said today. Assets earmarked for disposal contributed one-third of 2013 production.

The strike by more than 70,000 miners at Amplats, Impala and Lonmin Plc (LMI) cost workers 10.6 billion rand ($997 million) in wages by the time it ended on June 24. The stoppage pushed South Africa’s economy into contraction in the first quarter as mining output plunged in the country that accounts for more than two-thirds of the platinum extracted globally

The assets earmarked for sale accounted for 34 percent of the company’s attributable output of 2.3 million platinum ounces in 2013.

US palladium bar saw the biggest price decline of the day, dropping 2.1 percent to close at $852.00 per ounce on Tuesday, August 5. The price of Chinese palladium bar fell 0.5 percent to CNY 190.00 ($30.75) per gram. Japanese palladium bar saw little change in its price yesterday at JPY 2,955 ($28.82) per gram.

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US platinum bar prices saw a 0.3 percent decline to $1,458 per ounce. The price of Japanese platinum bar remained steady at JPY 4,858 ($47.37) per gram. The price of Chinese platinum bar flattened at CNY 308.00 ($49.85) per gram after two days of downward movement.

Indian gold bullion finished the day down 0.4 percent to INR 28,062 ($460.71) per 10 grams. Japanese gold bullion prices rose 0.4 percent to JPY 4,268 ($41.62) per gram. Chinese gold bullion prices saw a 0.4 percent decline to CNY 256.50 ($41.51) per gram. US gold bullion saw little change in its price yesterday at $1,294 per ounce.

At $20.13 per ounce, US silver fell 0.9 percent on Tuesday. Indian silver fell 0.7 percent in price to INR 44,862 ($736.53) per kilogram. This marks the fifth day in a row of declining prices and the drop-off has accelerated since Wednesday, July 30. Chinese silver closed 0.3 percent lower at CNY 4,295 ($695.13) per kilogram. The price of Japanese silver held steady at JPY 677.00 ($6.60) per 10 grams.

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