AngloGold Ashanti lost more ounces over safety in Q1 than all of 2011

Reuters reports work stoppages as a result of safety issues in South Africa cost AngloGold Ashanti 76,000 ounces of lost production in the first quarter.

That was more than all ounces lost in 2011 and pushed Q1 2012 output at the company to below 1 million ounces from 1.14 million ounces in the final quarter last year.

Anglogold is dependent on South Africa for 40% of its production. The Johannesburg-based firm is the tenth largest gold producer in terms of revenues and is placed seventh in terms of reserves with just under 75 million ounces.

AngloGold's ADRs were down 2.9% by early afternoon in New York trade, underperforming a generally weak day on the broader markets.

Comex gold for June delivery was trading at $1,661 an ounce in early afternoon trade on Tuesday, up a solid $17 an ounce on the day.