Lonmin platinum sales down 45.9% in Q3

Lonmin (LON:LMI), the world's third largest platinum producer, plagued with safety stoppages and labour disputes has announced Q3 2013 results showing a 45.9% drop in platinum sales and a 3.9% decrease in production during that period.

The South African company sold 81,382 ounces of platinum and 195,999 ounces of platinum group metals – a 34.5% drop – in the quarter ending in June. Although output was down compared to Q2 2013, the 2.9 million tonnes mined represent a 4.1% increase compared to Q2 2012.

Lonmin has made headlines over the past few months for furnace failures, safety stoppages and labour disputes – events which the company says caused the production drop.

Work halted and output decreased by 6.7% in April following a fatal accident at the firm's Karee mine.

Work also stopped at all 13 of the firm's mining shafts in June when a member of the National Union of Mineworkers' member was shot and miners went on strike.

Lonmin says 112,000 tonnes were lost from safety issues and 123,000 from labour stoppages.

While addressing the disruptions the platinum miner highlighted that its full-year target of  660,000 ounces in sales remains unchanged, as does its platinum metals concentrate guidance of more than 700,000 ounces.

"Although our operations continue to exceed our Renewal Plan we remain alert to the risks to production associated with safety stoppages and the uncertain labour relations landscape," the company said in a statement.

The company made minor gains on the London exchange on Thursday rising by o.03% – in keeping with an upward trend that started at the beginning of the month.

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