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Amplats Extends Slump as Mineworkers Strike: Johannesburg Mover

Jan. 16 (Bloomberg) -- Anglo American Platinum Ltd. fell the most in more than three months as employees at three of its mines refused to go to work after the company said jobs may be cut as part of a restructuring.

The world’s biggest producer of the metal fell 5.9 percent to 458.2 rand by the close in Johannesburg, the largest drop since Sept. 26, and the fourth day of declines. More than 1 million shares changed hands, almost three times the daily average of the past three months.

Workers at the Khomanani, Thembelani and Tumela mines staged an illegal work stoppage, company spokeswoman Mpumi Sithole said in an e-mailed response to questions. Mines in Rustenburg, west of Johannesburg, and north of Pilanesberg are operating as normal, she said. Amplats, as the company is known, will shut four shafts, cutting annual output by 400,000 ounces, and putting 14,000 jobs at risk, it said yesterday.

“The market is reacting to any kind of headlines we are seeing at the moment,” Francois Venter, an equities trader at Investec Asset Management in Cape Town, said by phone. “It’s had a good run and now there’s a bit of uncertainty coming back into the picture.”

Shares in Amplats have fallen 8.4 percent since reaching 500.50 rand on Jan. 10. The company’s 30-day historical volatility, a measure of stock swings, increased to 33.97 from 27.07 yesterday. The FTSE/JSE Africa All Share Index’s 30-day volatility gauge was at 8.1 from 8.14 previously. A higher reading means an asset price can have bigger moves.

To contact the reporters on this story: Stephen Gunnion in Johannesburg at sgunnion@bloomberg.net; Jaco Visser in Johannesburg at avisser3@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Vernon Wessels at vwessels@bloomberg.net

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