BHP, Anglo see only slight setbacks for iron ore production – by James Regan and Barbar Lewis (Reuters U.S. – July 20, 2016)

SYDNEY/LONDON – BHP Billiton and Anglo American have reported setbacks in their iron ore production, but analysts said the contraction was nowhere near enough to dent the massive global supply glut that has driven prices to record lows.

Overnight on Tuesday, BHP Billiton narrowly missed its iron ore output target in the financial year just ended following the Samarco disaster in Brazil, while Anglo American on Wednesday reduced its full-year production forecast in Brazil.

Anglo American’s shares were down 7.1 percent at 755.6 pence by 1149 GMT, when BHP’s shares in London were down 2.6 percent at 924.1 pence, in line with the FTSE-350 mining sector index.

Analysts said the steeper fall in the shares of Anglo American was not directly related to the heavily indebted company’s production results and instead blamed profit-taking on the recovery in share prices from the lows hit following the UK’s vote to leave the European Union.

Output at BHP’s Western Australian iron ore mines rose by 5 percent quarter-on-quarter to 64.6 million tonnes, pushing the annual total to 257 million tonnes, short of its last forecast of 260 million. BHP’s share of quarterly output was 55.6 million tonnes.

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