Johannesburg - South African stocks fell on Monday as investors cashed in on profits while worries about a looming shutdown of the United Stated government rattled investors globally.
A fall in the gold price also weighed on bullion shares such as Sibanye Gold and Gold Fields.
“We have taken our lead from overseas markets and we have seen areas of profit-taking after last week's record high,” said Ferdi Heyneke, portfolio manager at Afrifocus Securities.
The Top-40 index lost 0.82 percent to 39,449.84 while the All-share index shed 0.74 percent to 44,031.83.
Life insurer Sanlam fell the most on the Top-40 index, losing 2.68 percent to 46.86 rand, followed by grocer Shoprite, which shed 2.63 percent to 165.40 rand.
Sibanye fell nearly 5 percent to 12.60 rand.
Gold Fields, which also faces a possible graft probe into a black empowerment deal, lost nearly 2 percent to 46.09 rand.
Investors were also watching developments in the domestic mining sector where employers and unions are engaging in wage talks. The agreements struck so far have all been above inflation.
The National Union of Mineworkers said on Monday it had signed a wage agreement with coal producers, averting a possible strike that could have hit exports and supplies to power utility Eskom.
Separately, a strike at Anglo American Platinum, entered its fourth day as workers rallied in protest at planned job cuts at the world's top producer of platinum. . Amplats shares were down 0.87 percent to 436.19 rand.
Decliners outnumbered advancers 196 to 123 with 61 shares unchanged, according to preliminary bourse data.
Around 191 million shares changed hands. - Reuters