Business News of Sunday, 13 December 2015
Gold Fields Ltd. and AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. are two of the mining firms that experienced a surge in prices after a meltdown by South Africa’s rand against the dollar – a consequence of President Jacob Zuma’s sacking of finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene.
Zuma replaced Nene with a less popular lawmaker. The rand plunged to a record low against the dollar on Wednesday. It has slumped by 23 percent this year.
Gold firms in SA are reaping the benefits of the rand slump because they get their revenues from gold sales in the U.S. currency, while their costs are in rand.
Among the beneficiaries are: Harmony Gold Mining Co., which shot up by 25 percent, the highest in 16 years; Gold Fields Ltd., and AngloGold Ashanti Ltd., which surged by 9 percent apiece and Sibanye Gold Mining Co., which gained 5.7 percent.
“The producers are now strongly levered to movements in emerging-market gold prices,” Bloomberg quoted Andrew Byrne, a London-based analyst at Barclays Plc, as writing in a note Thursday.
“With leaner corporate structures, we expect this to translate into cash generation of either deleveraging or a return of dividends.”
Data compiled by Bloomberg showed that gold climbed to a record 16,389.66 rand an ounce on Wednesday and traded at 16,198.22 rand by 12:32 p.m. in Johannesburg.
The metal for immediate delivery was little changed at $1,027.33 an ounce in London, after reaching a five-year low last week, Bloomberg reported, adding that Harmony, the world’s highest-cost major gold producer, last traded 16 percent higher at 13.16 rand.
Anglo American Platinum Ltd., which is the world’s biggest producer of the metal and has the majority of its operations in South Africa, rose 4.1 percent. Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd., the second-largest, climbed 6.2 percent, Bloomberg added.