Insider trading rocks SA coal mine

Johannesburg -  The chief operations officer of Coal of Africa [JSE:CZA] Michiel Jakobus Bronn was fined for insider trading that took place even after he was instructed by the company’s chief executive officer not to trade shares, according to a South African regulator.

The Financial Services Board’s enforcement committee fined Bronn R350 000 ($26 800) for buying 117 000 shares on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in May 2015, three days before the company announced it had been granted a mining right, it said in an emailed statement on Wednesday.

"Bronn was aware at the time that the Department of Mineral Resources had approved an application for the company’s Makhado project,” the FSB said.

The trade occurred despite instructions from the company’s CEO not to trade in shares until the announcement was published, it said. Three days after purchasing the shares, the announcement was published and Coal of Africa rose by a record.

“No additional comment is required as the matter has been dealt with by the appropriate authorities who followed due process,” Coal of Africa said in an emailed response to questions.

The enforcement committee imposed the fine on February 28, according to the statement. Bronn was ordered to pay the investigation costs of his case in addition to the penalty, the FSB said.

CoAL shares closed -1.96% lower at R0.50 on the JSE on Tuesday.

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