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Glencore loss at US$8bn after commodity carnage

Glencore has been on a rollercoaster since fears about its survival surfaced in the middle of last year
Glencore loss at US$8bn after commodity carnage
Red is the colour for Glencore

Glencore (LON:GLEN) posted a loss of US$8.1bn in 2015 after a string of write-downs and impairments due to the slump in commodity prices.

Shares in the debt laden mining titan eased 2% lower as brokers said the mountain of red ink was more or less as expected while the maintained guidance for trading profits this year provided some reassurance.

Glencore has been on a rollercoaster since fears about its survival surfaced in the middle of last year as metal and oil prices tumbled.

It launched a US$10.2bn debt reduction plan in September and today said it had reduced net debt to US$25.9bn.

Net borrowings are scheduled to fall to between US$17-18bn by the end of this year and to US$15bn by end 2017 through a disposal programme that will see the agricultural arm, copper mines Cobar and Lomas Bayas and other unspecified assets head out.

In 2015, marketing and trading earnings fell 11% to US$2.7bn while industrial earnings declined by 38% to US$6bn as coal, zinc, copper and oil were all hit with sharply lower prices.

Overall, underlying earnings were US$2.2bn. On an attributable basis losses reached double figures at US$10.1bn.

In the current year, Glencore expects marketing earnings to be between US$2.4-2.7bn while production is set to fall in all metals except nickel and ferrochrome. 

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