Stocks rise slightly, supported by mining firms

Anglo American was the biggest bluechip gainer.

South African stocks edged slightly higher on Monday led by mining companies such as Anglo American after a Chinese rate cut underpinned resource firms.

Anglo American was the biggest bluechip gainer after adding more than 3.3%, while diversified miner BHP Billiton rose 3%.

China cut interest rates for the third time in six months on Sunday in a bid to lower companies’ borrowing costs and stoke a sputtering economy that is headed for its worst year in a quarter of a century.

The benchmark Top-40 index ended 0.8% higher at 48,098 points and the broader All-share index gained 0.7% to 54,161.

Old Mutual hit an all-time high of R43.61, after Nedbank, South Africa’s fourth-largest banker in which the insurer has a stake, posted higher first-quarter income from trading, fees and commissions.

Nedbank rose as much as 1.7% in earlier trade but pared some of those gains to close 0.8% higher.

On the downside, Anglo American Platinum dipped 2% after community protests near one of its mines blocked workers from getting to work.

Fuel-maker Sasol dipped 1.3% as oil slipped on signs that US shale oil production was recovering after a recent price rally renewed concerns of a growing global supply glut.

Trade was below average with 172 million shares changing hands compared with last year’s daily average of 183 million shares.

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