Platinum stocks shine on JSE as platinum price climbs

Johannesburg-SA (Aug 10)  The top platinum shares on the JSE stormed ahead on Wednesday morning to new highs, in total contrast to the rest of the market which mostly followed European peers to take a breather.

Shares like Impala Platinum (Implats) [JSE:IMP], Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) [JSE:AMS] and Northam Platinum [JSE:NHM] all gained more than 4% in early trade to new 52-week highs.

The surge in platinum share prices however did not follow through to the rest of the resources sector, with the Resource 10 index 0.81% lower after BHP Billiton [JSE:BIL] lost 1.91% to R182.40 and Anglo American [JSE:AGL] traded 1.79% lower at R152.90.

Most of the other indices were also lower, with the All-share index losing 0.28% to 52 341 points and the Top 40 index trading 0.50% softer at 45 28 points. The Industrial index was also 0.41% lower, in line with a correction on the European markets after six days of gains.

The Financial index, which gained more than 11% over the past 30 days, however continued its correction and at mid-morning was 0.11% higher.

The strong rise in platinum stocks was supported by the rampant platinum price, which gained 2.75% on Wednesday morning to $1 178.00 an ounce. Platinum, which as recently as June 27 was trading below $1 000/oz, has gained almost 18% over the past 30 days.

By mid-morning Amplats was the star among platinum shares, after Implats and Northam lost some ground. The world’s biggest platinum producer at that stage traded 4.05% higher at a new 52-week high of R471.23, after it was at a 52-week low of R165.08 at the beginning of the year.

Before Wednesday’s gains Amplats was 30.65% higher over the past 30 days and a massive 161.79% for the year to date.

At mid-morning Implats was 3.34% stronger at a new high of R67.17, after reaching as high as R67.93 in earlier trade. The stock has been particularly strong over the past month, gaining 46.07% which means it is 153.21% higher for the year to date.

Northam did not gain as much as its big competitors, but before Wednesday’s trade was still 26.1% higher over the past month and 91.67% higher for the year to date. At mid-morning the share was 3.59% stronger at new high of R53.12, after it reached R54.74 in earlier trade.

Among the banks Standard Bank [JSE:SBK] traded a solid 1.77% higher at R150.88 and Barclays Africa [JSE:BGA] was 1.58% stronger at R165.06. Nedbank [JSE:NED] gained 1.10% to R215.05. These shares all made solid gains over the past 30 days, with Standard Bank gaining 22.6%, Nedbank 19.5% and Barclays Africa 16.7%.

Investment company Brait [JSE:BAT] traded 5.67% down at R115.55 and is now 25.9% lower over the past 90 days. Wednesday morning’s drop followed an announcement that the company’s net asset value per share in the first quarter dropped due to the decline in the pound's value after Britain decided to leave the European Union.

MTN [JSE:MTN] was 4.28% lower at R122.00 after the share lost 8.66% over the previous seven days. The company announced last Friday that it suffered a loss in the first half of the current financial year.

Retail shares are still performing strongly, with Shoprite [JSE:SHP] and Massmart [JSE:MSM] reaching new 52-week highs. Shoprite was 2.27% higher at a new high of R211.99; the share is now 27.9% higher over the past 30 days after a stronger-than-expected trading report. Massmart gained 23.01% over the last month and added 2.47% to reach R155.03 on Wednesday morning.

Source: fin24