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South African Stocks: Anglo, Billiton, DRDGold, Murray & Roberts

The FTSE/JSE Africa All Share Index closed at its highest since July 27, advancing 613.10, or 2 percent, to 31,449.99 by the 5 p.m. end of trading in Johannesburg. The index gained 1.1 percent this week.

The following were among the most active stocks in the South African market today.

Anglo American Plc (AGL SJ), the mining company that makes up more than 9 percent of the benchmark stock index, gained the most in a week, adding 1.4 percent to 286.99 rand. Copper rose the most since April 2009 on speculation that European governments may end a deadlock on fighting the region’s debt crisis. Industrial metals such as lead and aluminum climbed.

BHP Billiton Ltd. (BIL SJ), the world’s largest mining group, rose 4.3 percent to 245 rand.

Coronation Fund Managers Ltd. (CML SJ), a money manager, gained for a second day, climbing 1.7 percent to 20.99 rand. The company had its recommendation increased to “buy” from “hold” by Avior Research Ltd.

DRDGold Ltd. (DRD SJ), South Africa’s fourth-biggest producer of the metal, gained 2.6 percent to 4.69 rand. Gold rose the most in more than a week as a drop in the dollar and renewed optimism that Europe will act to tame the debt crisis boosted investor demand.

Harmony Gold Mining Co. (HAR SJ), the continent’s third-largest gold company, added 2.3 percent to 94.75 rand.

Murray & Roberts Ltd. (MUR SJ), the second-biggest construction company, declined for a fifth day, sliding 0.5 percent to take its loss for the week to 9.3 percent. The company said its expected loss for the Gorgon Pioneer Materials Offloading Facility has widened by an estimated 520 million rand ($64.3 million).

Netcare Ltd. (NTC SJ), South Africa’s largest private-hospital operator, advanced for the first time in three days, rising 0.8 percent to 13.15 rand. The company was rated “hold” in new coverage by Deutsche Bank AG, with a 12-month price estimate of 14.20 rand.

Northam Platinum Ltd. (NHM SJ), the operator of the world’s deepest platinum mine, climbed 1.2 percent to 30.10 rand. The company plans to start talks on Oct. 27 to resolve a dispute with unions over pay, Marco van der Linde, a spokesman for the company, said by mobile phone today.

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