Freeport Fourth-Quarter Net Income Surges
Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (NYSE: FCX), the world’s largest publicly traded copper company but also a significant gold producer due to by-product metal, lists fourth-quarter net income of $1 billion, or 71 cents per share, compared to $292 million, or 21 cents, in the same period a year ago. After adjusting for net gains of $291 million primarily related to tax benefits associated with U.S. tax reform, partly offset by charges for adjustments to environmental obligations, adjusted net income totaled $750 million, or 51 cents. Copper-mining costs per pound fell from a year ago due to higher by-product credits, the company says. Fourth-quarter copper sales of 1 billion pounds were in line with the October estimate but lower than fourth-quarter 2016 sales of 1.1 billion pounds, primarily due to lower volumes in North America and at Cerro Verde, Freeport says. Fourth-quarter gold sales of 593,000 ounces were lower than the October estimate of 625,000, primarily reflecting lower mill rates at PT Freeport Indonesia. However, gold sales were higher than fourth-quarter 2016 sales of 405,000 ounces due to higher ore grades in Indonesia. Fourth-quarter molybdenum sales of 24 million pounds were slightly higher than the October estimate of 23 million pounds and year-ago sales of 22 million pounds. Guidance for sales in 2018 includes approximately 3.9 billion pounds of copper, 2.4 million ounces of gold and 91 million pounds of molybdenum, of which 1 billion pounds of copper, 675,000 ounces of gold and 24 million pounds of molybdenum are projected for the first quarter. For 2017, net income was $1.8 billion, or $1.25 per share, compared to a net loss of $4.2 billion, or $3.16, for 2016. “We are continuing to make significant progress in our ongoing negotiations with the Indonesian government to restore long-term stability for our Grasberg operations…,” says Richard C. Adkerson, president and chief executive officer. Issues include regulatory changes, ownership, long-term mining rights through 2041 and construction of a smelter in the country. During the fourth quarter, Freeport repaid $1.7 billion in debt.
By Allen Sykora of Kitco News; email@example.com
Endeavour Silver Projects Higher Output In 2018
Thursday January 25, 2018 09:06
Endeavour Silver Corp. (TSX: EDR, NYSE: EXK) says 2018 silver-equivalent production is expected to increase by 20% from 2017. Endeavour forecasts higher production at all three existing mines as well as initial output from a new mine at El Compas by the end of March, with commercial production scheduled for the end of July. With higher output, costs per ounce are expected to decline, the company says. Silver production is anticipated to be in the range of 5.8 million to 6.4 million ounces, while gold output is expected be in a range of 58,000 to 64,000 ounces. Silver-equivalent production is forecast to be between 10.2 million and 11.2 million ounces, using a 75-to-1 silver-gold ratio. “We are looking forward to a much better year, with higher production and lower costs in 2018, owing to improved operating performance at each of the three existing mines and the development of our fourth mine into commercial production,” says Bradford Cooke, chief executive officer.