Sibanye Gold, which has become a major platinum producer, reported a steep increase in annual profit and paid a handsome dividend as higher gold prices and the inclusion of platinum profits buoyed the company’s results. Sibanye, which during 2016 added the whole of Aquarius Platinum and Anglo American Platinum’s Rustenburg mines to its portfolio, declared a total dividend of R1.45 per share for the year, returning R1.3bn to shareholders. It declared a second-half dividend of 60c per share, equating to R560m, compared with a 90c final dividend the year before. Sibanye reported a profit for the year to end-December of R3.3bn compared with R538m a year earlier. Net debt in the group grew to R6.3bn from R1.3bn a year earlier as its gross debt shot up to R8bn from R1.8bn a year earlier, as a result of its aggressive growth in platinum. The two standout weak performances in the year were the Cooke gold mines, which recorded a loss of R2bn, and the Rustenburg mines, which had a R649m loss ...

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