FILE PHOTO: Mine Captain Kalisa Vincent, 67, walks in a tunnel at the Kilembe mines, in the foothills of the Rwenzori Mountains
JOHANNESBURG - South African markets continued their newly found shine yesterday, driven by advances in diversified mining stocks which hit an 8-year high on broad based gains.

The JSE All Share Index was 1.07percent higher at 57776, as major indices gained ground.

The Mining Index shot up 1.84percent to 187054 while the All Share Industrials rose 0.87percent to 76527, and the Gold Mining Index 1.41percent to 1516. The Resources Index increased 1.47percent to 48119.

The gold, platinum and palladium prices also gained ground.

Johann Biermann, an independent analyst, said diversified miners exceeded 8-year highs, partly due to a spectacular rally in iron ore.

“Iron ore has been rallying since the most recent Vale incident that effectively shut their iron ore plants,” said Biermann.

JSE listed iron ore producers Kumba Iron Ore and Assore also made gains. Kumba rose 1.4percent at R455.43 a share while Assore was 3.62percent higher at R390.68 a share a day after global giants BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto lowered output targets by the tropical cyclone that hit output last month.

On Tuesday, BHP Billiton lowered its iron ore production estimates as the impact reduced production by approximately 6 to 8million tons following Rio Tinto’s cutting of its 2019 outlook for iron ore shipments from Australia’s Pilbara region on Monday as a result of production disruption and damage caused by tropical cyclone Veronica.

The announcements signalled further tightening in the market after Vale-owned Brumadinho dam in Brazil collapsed in January, four years after the Samarco dam disaster in 2015.

The Vale disaster is expected to support iron ore prices with diversified miners continuing to look attractive.

Platinum producers also continued their momentum with Impala Platinum leading the gains after strengthening 4.54percent at R61.05 a share, and Anglo American Platinum rose 3.54percent to R789.10 a share.

JSE listed platinum stocks on the JSE have been leading the market, with Impala leading the rally followed by Lonmin, Northam Platinum and Anglo American Platinum.

The rally in the palladium and rhodium prices have buoyed the producers.

Diversified mining company Exxaro Resources rose 3.22percent at R177.83 a share, while Harmony Gold rose almost 4percent to R26.35 a share.