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Iamgold First-Quarter Profit, Production Rise

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(Kitco News) - Iamgold Corp. (TSX: IMG; NYSE: IAG) late Monday reported that its first-quarter profit rose, helped by higher output and gold prices combined with lower costs per ounce.

Net earnings were $42.3 million, or 9 cents per share, a turnaround from a net loss of $18 million, or 4 cents, in the same period a year ago.

Excluding special items, adjusted earnings came in at $40.4 million, also 9 cents per share, up from adjusted income of $5.1 million, or a penny, in the year-ago period.

Iamgold reported that January-March revenues rose to $314.5 million from $260.5 million a year ago.

"Earlier in the year, we said our priorities were to meet expectations and to execute a robust set of growth projects,” said Steve Letwin, president and chief executive officer. “Gold production in the quarter was up year-over-year, with Essakane and Westwood setting record highs. All-in sustaining costs of $953 an ounce were down $118 an ounce from the fourth quarter of last year.”

Gold production totaled 229,000 ounces, up 15,000 ounces from the prior-year period. Iamgold said the increase was due to higher grades at Essakane (16,000 more ounces) and higher grades and the continued ramp-up at Westwood (10,000 ounces), partially offset by lower grades at Rosebel (9,000 ounces) and lower throughput at joint ventures (2,000 ounces).

All-in sustaining costs of $953 per ounce were down $39 from the same quarter of 2017. Meanwhile, the average realized price of gold rose to $1,331 from $1,230 an ounce.

“Annual production and cost guidance remains unchanged and our growth projects are firmly on track,” Letwin said. “At Essakane, the world’s largest hybrid solar/thermal power plant was completed, and the pre-feasibility study for a heap leaching project, as part of our expansion of the mine, is nearing completion. In the second half of this year, we expect to have a mineral reserve estimate for Saramacca and a completed feasibility study for our Boto gold project. With recent resource estimates for our Monster Lake and Eastern Borosi projects, nearly all of our advanced greenfield projects have confirmed a resource."

Iamgold maintained its full-year production and cost guidance for 2018. Second-quarter output is expected to be down from the first quarter and to trend upward in the second half of the year. The second-quarter total is expected to reflect the impact of scheduled mill maintenance at Rosebel and Essakane and the seasonal rains at Rosebel, Iamgold said.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and may not reflect those of Kitco Metals Inc. The author has made every effort to ensure accuracy of information provided; however, neither Kitco Metals Inc. nor the author can guarantee such accuracy. This article is strictly for informational purposes only. It is not a solicitation to make any exchange in commodities, securities or other financial instruments. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.

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