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Barrick Gold stabilises after heavy cut-backs

“Our over-arching objective as a business is to grow our free cash flow per share in any foreseeable gold price environment,” it said.
Barrick Gold stabilises after heavy cut-backs
Barrick has been in retrenchment mode for three years now

Gold sector bellwether Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) kept its production forecast this year unchanged despite lower revenues and output in the first three months.

Revenues fell 14% to US$1.93bn due to a weaker gold price and 8% decline in production to 1.18mln ounces.

Including one-off charges the world's largest gold miner posted a loss of US$83mln.

Underlying profits rose to US$127mln or 11c per share in the three months to March from US$62mln or 5c this time a year ago.

Barrick has been in retrenchment mode for three years now. Asset sales to reduce debts affected production and Barrick repeated it expects to produce between 5-5.5mln ounces this year.

That compares with 8mln ounces per year recently but Barrick is now focused on growing its cash flow.

“Our over-arching objective as a business is to grow our free cash flow per share in any foreseeable gold price environment,” it said.

The cash inflow totalled US$181mn in the first quarter to make four quarters in a row now it has generated cash.

The miner reduced its forecast of average all-in-sustaining–costs to between US$760-810 per ounce from US$775 to US$825 per ounce.

Debt reduced by US$842mln and Barrick said it is on target is to reduce debt by a further US$2bn in 2016.

Shares rose 1% to US$16.33.

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