A television presenter speaks in front of a reception with an electronic board displaying movements in major indices at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange building in Sandton Johannesburg
Johannesburg - Mining shares featured among the decliners on the JSE benchmark index on Thursday, as commodity prices slid, with gold hitting a six-week low on expectations of further US interest rate rises this year and receding political uncertainty in Europe.

The benchmark Top40 index was off 0.36 percent at 46 747.06 points, and the broader all share index dipped 0.34 percent to 53 406.31 points.

Spot gold was down 0.2 percent at $1 254 (R16742) an ounce at 4.30pm, having earlier hit $1 251.37 an ounce, the lowest since April 10.

AngloGold Ashanti fell 3.44 percent to R149.43, Gold Fields was down 2.59 percent to R42.57, while Sibanye lost 2.04 percent to R25.88.

Kumba Iron Ore slid 4.41 percent to R39.84 and Anglo American closed 3.02 percent lower at R173.94.

Meanwhile, European shares powered ahead yesterday as earnings, economic data and politics aligned to boost the market to further highs.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 index rose 0.7 percent, holding at 20-month highs, while German blue chips soared to an all-time high and France’s CAC climbed to its highest in more than nine years.

US stocks were little changed yesterday afternoon as a decline in energy and technology stocks erased some of the early gains.