The reception area of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. File picture: Leon Nicholas

Johannesburg - South African stocks edged lower on Monday in line with global peers as simmering political tensions in Ukraine weighed on appetite for risky assets.

But shares of mining firm Anglo American Platinum rose 4.69 percent to 478.74 rand after the company said it would sell its strike-hit and underperforming mines in Rustenburg.

Resource shares also benefited from higher commodity prices as investors sought protection against a drop in equities.

“The rand has strengthened a little bit so to see the mining shares holding up, it does look like there is buying coming in gold and platinum shares,” said Ferdi Heyneke, portfolio manager at Afrifocus Securities.

A weaker rand normally boosts mining shares as the companies pay costs in rand but sell their output in dollars.

Gold producer AngloGold Ashanti rose 2.24 percent to 192.51 rand, while Impala Platinum gained nearly 2 percent to 105.96 rand.

But the JSE All-share index closed 0.53 percent lower at 51,420 and the blue-chip Top-40 index fell 0.6 percent to 46,279.

Losers on the day included Imperial Holdings which shed 2.5 percent to 189.41 rand and investment bank Investec which was down 2.3 percent.

Overall, 128 million shares changed hands, below last year's daily average of about 176 million shares.

A total of 126 shares advanced, while 181 declined and 51 were unchanged. - Reuters