07/01/2013 20:35:00

Whitehaven Shares Hit After Hoax by Anti-Coal Group

-- Whitehaven shares stage recovery after falling 9% on email hoax

-- Environmental group opposed to coal mining claims responsibility

-- Securities regulator says it's looking into the matter

SYDNEY--More than 300 million Australian dollars (US$314 million) was wiped off the value of Whitehaven Coal Ltd. (WHC.AU) shares at one stage on Monday, after the Australian mining company fell victim to a hoax email apparently from an environmentalist group.

Whitehaven said the email was a fake media release purportedly from Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. (ANZ.AU) which claimed the lender had withdrawn a A$1.2 billion loan previously offered to help fund its Maules Creek mine in New South Wales state.

A group calling itself Front Line Action on Coal claimed responsibility for the email, which drove the company's shares down by as much as 9% in Sydney before Whitehaven went into trading halt. The shares recovered most of their losses after trading resumed following Whitehaven's statement.

The episode highlights the simmering tension between mining companies seeking to unlock deposits of raw materials in Australia that can be shipped to fast-growing economies in Asia and elsewhere, and other land users and environmental groups opposed to new resources developments.

In a separate statement, ANZ also confirmed that the release was part of a hoax, and said it remained "fully supportive" of Whitehaven, one of Australia's largest-listed coal producers with a market value of A$3.5 billion.

Whitehaven announced last month that it had received the ANZ loan, which replaced its existing bank facilities. It said the loan would be used to finance Maules Creek.

In a statement, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, or ASIC, said it was aware of the hoax press release and was looking into the matter.

"ASIC's initial enquires will focus on if there has been a breach of the Corporations Act. If there appears to be a breach, ASIC will investigate and take timely and appropriate action," it said.

"Our primary concern is the expansion of the world's most unsustainable industry," said Jonathan Moylan, a spokesman for Front Line Action on Coal, an activist group. "Bank customers deserve to know where their money is going, and while we have been going through the formal processes the government is no longer listening."

It is the third time in six months that major Australian companies have been targeted by scams.

David Jones Ltd. (DJS.AU) disclosed a A$1.65 billion takeover approach by a mysterious U.K. entity in June, which sent shares in the department store chain up as much as 18% before the offer was quickly withdrawn. A regulatory investigation by ASIC into disclosure and trading in David Jones stock followed.

In October, engineering contractor Macmahon Holdings Ltd. (MAH.AU) halted trading its shares after being contacted by the media over a fabricated email exchange among Macmahon board members about a Chinese takeover approach.

Write to Rhiannon Hoyle at rhiannon.hoyle@wsj.com

Subscribe to WSJ: http://online.wsj.com?mod=djnwires

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 07, 2013 15:35 ET (20:35 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2013 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

Post comment

Related debate

  • 1 week
  • 1 month
  • 1 Year
15 Feb
PNDORA
  Jeg har gentagne gange analyseret Pandora. Læsere, som ønsker mine analyse af Pandoras forretnings..
81
18 Feb
NOVO-B
Når ens hustru har lidt voldsomt under diabetes  og dens bivirkninger tiltagende gennem 25 år, så er..
33
19 Feb
 
Jeg tager hatten for dit velbegrunede og fyldestgørende indlæg til debatten. Det kunne mange lære af..
32
16 Feb
NOVO-B
@ Investor1 Jeg er hverken for eller imod hvad du skriver, men jeg har nu i gennem næsten et år løbe..
30
16 Feb
NOVO-B
Din og Investor1's totale fejlvurdering af både Zealand og Novo har desværre udviklet sig til et per..
20
15 Feb
OMXC20
Kære alle. Jeg har flere gange tilbudt at svare på investeringsspørgsmål for at bidrage til at så ma..
20
17 Feb
MAERSK-B
Jeg er i mit vemodige hjørne i dag, for det er den første dag i over 25 år, hvor jeg ikke kan kalde ..
18
17 Feb
E:QEC
Med fare for en gentagelse, så vil jeg alligevel melde at Canada er i fuld gang med at omstille sig ..
18
17 Feb
NOVO-B
@alpenyt Tror bare jeg vil kalde dig for Wiki(pedia) fra nu af :) Du burde skrive en artikel i kvart..
17
16 Feb
NOVO-B
Jeg deltager, modsat dig, med argumenter og fakta, du er blot personfnidrer, fordi du ikke kan forst..
15

Elliott Capital Advisors, L.P : Form 8.3 - GKN Plc

20/02/2018 15:25:09
FORM 8.3 PUBLIC OPENING POSITION DISCLOSURE/DEALING DISCLOSURE BY A PERSON WITH INTERESTS IN RELEVANT SECURITIES REPRESENTING 1% OR MORE Rule 8.3 of the Takeover Code (the "Code") 1.         KEY INFORMATION (a) Full name of discloser: Elliott Capital Advisors, L.P. (for itself and related general partners ..

Cisco Leadership In Automation Continues With New Network Automation Portfolio for Service Providers

Related news
20/02/2018 13:00:30
Company launches industry's most comprehensive closed-loop multi-vendor, multi-domain automation solution   SAN JOSE, Calif., Feb. 20, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cisco today introduced its new Cisco Crosswork Network Automation software portfolio to improve how global service providers run their large-scale networks. The solutions are designed to work together to offer greater network visi..

Majedie Asset Management Ltd : Form 8.3 - TESCO PLC

20/02/2018 10:48:50
FORM 8.3   PUBLIC OPENING POSITION DISCLOSURE/DEALING DISCLOSURE BY A PERSON WITH INTERESTS IN RELEVANT SECURITIES REPRESENTING 1% OR MORE Rule 8.3 of the Takeover Code (the "Code")   1.         KEY INFORMATION   (a) Full name of discloser: ..

Most read news

  • 24 hours
  • 48 hours
  • 1 week
1
Focusing on applications, INTchain is the real valuable blockchain
2
Pöyry provides lenders technical advisory services as Cirebon 2 power plant project in Indonesia achieves financial close
3
SoftServe and Adjoint Deliver the Future of Blockchain in FinTech
4
DBV Technologies Reports December 31, 2017 Cash Position
5
SoftServe and Adjoint Deliver the Future of Blockchain in FinTech

Buy and sell signals

  • Trend
  • Moneymachine

Copyright Euroinvestor A/S 2018   Disclaimer and Terms of Use
Quote information is delivered by Morningstar.
Data is delayed 15-20 minutes according to the distribution agreements set by the different exchanges.
 
21 February 2018 00:58:47
(UTC+00:00) Dublin, Edinburgh, Lisbon, London
Version: LiveBranchBuild_20180219.1 - EUROWEB2 - 2018-02-21 01:58:47 - 2018-02-21 00:58:47 - 1000 - Website: OKAY