STRKING RESULTS: Anglo American Platinum Ltd., the world's largest producer of the metal, had an operating loss of $715 million in 2012 as violent labor unrest in South Africa paralyzed its operations for weeks.

SPIRALING DOWN? The loss follows a profit of more than $1 billion in 2011. The company says it might close some operations and lay off as many as 14,000 workers.

MOTHER LODES: The mining industry is a huge part of the economy in South Africa, which is the world's largest producer of platinum, gold and chromium.

 

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