Absa Capital wins regulatory approval for SAfrican palladium ETF

ROME (Reuters) - South Africa's Absa Capital has received regulatory approval for the first Johannesburg-listed palladium exchange-traded fund and plans to launch the product by the end of the year, a spokesman for Absa said on Sunday.

The fund will be backed exclusively by palladium sourced in South Africa, Absa's head of investments Vladimir Nedeljkovic said on Sunday on the sidelines of the London Bullion Market Association's annual conference.

"We have regulatory approval, and we're now basically just finalising a couple of small things," Nedeljkovic said. "We definitely want to list before the end of the year."

A similar fund backed by platinum that Absa launched in April saw huge inflows from investors, growing in just four months into the world's biggest platinum-backed ETF by metal under management.

Palladium has been the best performer of the main precious metals this year, with prices up 3.5 percent since the end of 2012, compared with an 8 percent drop in platinum prices and a 20 percent fall in gold.

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