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"They have been surviving on hope but it isn't a very good strategy"

Falling platinum prices are placing increasing pressure on South African platinum miners.
"They have been surviving on hope but it isn't a very good strategy" "They have been surviving on hope but it isn't a very good strategy" "They have been surviving on hope but it isn't a very good strategy" "They have been surviving on hope but it isn't a very good strategy" "They have been surviving on hope but it isn't a very good strategy"

Platinum miners under pressure

Staff reporter

Impala Platinum Holdings (JSE: IMP) last year flagged 2,500 job cuts from its 31,000-member workforce as it experienced "severe financial pressures" largely due to persistently low metal prices and continued cost increases.
 
Implats, as it is known, then reduced its refined platinum guidance after the March quarter, from 1.5 million ounces to 1.46Moz, due to furnace challenges.

"The elimination of high-cost production at Impala Rustenburg remains our key imperative and I am happy to report that good progress is being made with this operation's strategic review to align the business with our lower future metal prices outlook," CEO Nico Muller said in April.

Platinum is currently worth about US$844 an ounce, having halved in value in the past five years.

"There isn't much management can do at this platinum price," Noah Capital Markets analyst Rene Hochreiter told Bloomberg.

"They have been surviving on hope but it isn't a very good strategy."

Fellow platinum miner Lonmin (LSE: LMI) is also restructuring, which could see 12,600 jobs cut over three years.  

Sibanye-Stillwater (JSE: SGL) is moving closer to acquiring Lonmin, which CEO Neal Froneman has said would create "a more robust business, better able to withstand volatile PGM prices and exchange rates".