Lower coal prices dent Teck profit

Tue Apr 23, 2013 6:33am EDT
 
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(Reuters) - Teck Resources Ltd TCKb.TO TCK.N, Canada's largest diversified miner, reported a 40 percent fall in first-quarter adjusted profit due to lower coal prices, and said economic uncertainty may affect prices and shipments.

On an adjusted basis, the company's earnings fell to C$328 million ($319 million), or 56 Canadian cents per share, from C$544 million, or 93 Canadian cents per share, a year earlier.

Revenue from operations fell about 9 percent to C$2.33 billion. Coal revenue fell by C$138 million as a result of significantly lower coal prices.

Coal prices were down 28 percent from a year ago at $161 per tonne, while copper was down 5 percent, Teck said.

Teck warned in February that demand for coal would be soft through at least the first half of 2013. The company said economic uncertainty in Europe and the United States, along with lower growth rates in emerging markets was hitting demand for its products.

Coal production of 6.2 million tonnes in the first quarter was largely unchanged from a year ago.

The company said it continues to experience volatile markets for its products. It expects total coal sales in the second quarter, including spot sales, to be at or above 6.0 million tonnes.

Teck plans to produce around 24.5 million tonnes of the metallurgical coal in 2013 and 350,000 tonnes of copper.

Net profit attributable to shareholders rose to C$319 million, or 55 Canadian cents per share, from C$258 million, or 44 Canadian cents per share, a year earlier. Profit last year was affected by a $329 million after-tax charge related to the refinancing of a portion of its debt.

($1 = 1.0269 Canadian dollars)

(Reporting by Bhaswati Mukhopadhyay in Bangalore and Julie Gordon in Toronto; Editing by Robin Paxton, Sreejiraj Eluvangal)