AngloGold Ashanti

What difference a new CEO makes – and how a good one leaving can hurt. Since the FT reported on Monday that Mark Cutifani of AngloGold Ashanti was set to take over the reins at Anglo American – and confirmed on Tuesday – investors have given their verdict. This week, Anglo American is up over 3.3 per cent; AngloGold is down 2.9 per cent.

Both companies have given the move their spin – “inspirational leadership” said AngloGold; a “seasoned miner” said Anglo American. But as Lex pointed out, it’s Cutifani’s ability to make asset disposals and foster good relations with governments that will be most valued in his new job.

The Marikana miners may have agreed a settlement with Lonmin, but South African mining strikes are far from over. AngloGold Ashanti is now in the eye of the storm.

After closing its Kopanang mine after a strike that began last week with 5,000 workers, the company has now halted all South African operations as most of its 35,000 employees have joined the industrial action. Shares are down 3 per cent in Johannesburg on Wednesday. Read more