Bloomberg News

South African Stocks Slip to 3-Month Low as Commodities Drop

June 23, 2011

(Updates with closing share prices from third paragraph.)

June 23 (Bloomberg) -- South African stocks slid to a three-month low as U.S. jobless claims rose and tumbling commodity prices were a drag on the stocks of mining companies BHP Billiton Plc and Anglo American Plc.

The FTSE/JSE Africa All Share Index weakened 1.5 percent to 30,326.54 at the 5 p.m. close of trading in Johannesburg, the lowest level since March 15.

Applications for U.S. jobless benefits increased 9,000 in the week ended June 18 to 429,000, Labor Department figures showed. European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet also said risk signals for euro area financial stability are flashing “red.” The U.S. Federal Reserve reduced its growth and employment forecasts for the world’s biggest economy, worsening the outlook for demand. Copper, nickel and zinc dropped in London trading as concern mounted Greece will fail to repay all its debt.

“We continue to take our cue from global markets as worries over the Greek debt story continues,” Renaissance BJM, a Johannesburg-based brokerage, said in an e-mailed note to clients.

BHP Billiton declined for a second day, falling 2.4 percent to 246.46 rand, while Anglo American dropped 3 percent to 309.49 rand, snapping two days of gains.

--With assistance from Franz Wild in Johannesburg. Editors: Linda Shen, Ana Monteiro

To contact the reporter on this story: Sikonathi Mantshantsha in Johannesburg at smantshantsh@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Gavin Serkin at gserkin@bloomberg.net


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