Barrick Gold Corp earnings beat expectations on lower production costs, boosts quarterly dividend – by Sunny Freeman (Financial Post – February 16, 2017)

http://business.financialpost.com/

TORONTO — Barrick Gold Corp. raised its dividend Wednesday after fourth-quarter earnings beat analysts’ expectations as it lowered its cost of producing gold closer to its US$700 target. The Toronto-based mining giant, which reports in U.S. dollars, reported net income of $425 million, or 36 cents per share.

After adjustments, net income for the quarter was $255 million, or 22 cents a share — a 180 per cent jump from the $91 million, or eight cents per share it earned in the fourth quarter of 2015. Analysts were expecting earnings of $227 million, or 20 cents per share.

The company credited increases in realized gold and copper prices and lower costs of sale for the improvements. “Barrick’s operations delivered progressively-stronger performance over the course of 2016, with three consecutive quarters of improved all-in sustaining cost guidance and gold production at the high end of our annual production forecast,” the company said in a statement.

“These results reflect our ongoing focus on capital discipline, and Best-in-Class improvements that are driving greater productivity and efficiency.”

The company also boosted its 2017 gold production estimate to between 5.6 million and 5.9 million ounces with all in sustaining costs coming in between $750 and $790 per ounce, representing an improvement from its earlier guidance.

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