Shares in Assore leapt yesterday afternoon after the base metals company said its headline earnings had more than doubled in the half-year to December. The company, which holds half of iron ore, chrome and manganese producer Assmang, posted a 119.4 percent rise in interim headline earnings to R2.4 billion. It attributed the boost to the 104.4 percent increase in headline earnings at Assmang on the back of higher iron ore prices and a weaker rand. Based on the increased earnings for the period, it declared an interim dividend of R4.50 a share compared with R2.50 a year earlier, which will be paid to shareholders on or about March 10. The shares soared 7.45 percent to close at R415.30. – Dineo Faku