Coeur 2019 gold output tops guidance; silver output below
The company said it produced 359,418 ounces of gold, which fell within the updated guidance on Nov. 4 of 334,000 to 372,000 ounces. Silver output last year was 11.7 million ounces, compared to a guidance range of 12.2 million to 14.7 million.
Coeur also produced 17.1 million pounds of zinc and 16.6 million pounds of lead.
"Coeur's operations delivered solid gold production in 2019, highlighted by a strong second half of the year," said Mitchell J. Krebs, Coeur's President and Chief Executive Officer. "Palmarejo was our best-performing operation last year, while Kensington's gold production increased 12% year-over-year. Wharf's gold production was 58% higher in the second half of 2019 compared to the first half, leading to a 10% year-over-year production increase."
Rochester’s fourth-quarter output rose 35% from the third; however, lower crushing rates meant full-year output fell below expectations, the CEO said. He added that there are encouraging results for investment in a high-pressure grinding roll to accelerate silver recovery rates and boost the mine’s economics.
Meanwhile, fourth-quarter output at Silvertip was below expectations, but the company said it has begun to see tangible results from its efforts to improve mill availability and further stabilize the operation.
Coeur’s fourth-quarter output tallies were 94,716 ounces of gold, 3.2 million ounces of silver, 3.9 million pounds of zinc and 4.0 million pounds of lead.
The company said it expects to issue 2020 production and cost guidance at the same time it releases fourth-quarter and full-year 2019 financial results on Feb. 19.
"Looking ahead to 2020, our key priorities are to advance our efforts to further expand Rochester, continue to stabilize and begin to optimize our Silvertip operation, invest in exploration at our most prospective sites including the Sterling and Crown projects in southern Nevada, and deliver consistent operating results that generate positive free cash flow and lower overall costs," Krebs said.