Barrick Gold aims to cut at least $2 billion in debt this year (Feb. 17)

Thu Feb 18, 2016 9:08am EST
 
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(The story headline and paragraph 1 were corrected to say company set production and debt-reduction targets for 2016, not cut forecast and costs)

(Reuters) - Barrick Gold Corp (ABX.N: Quote) (ABX.TO: Quote), the world's largest gold producer, on Wednesday forecast 2016 gold production of 5.0-5.5 million ounces and a debt reduction target of at least $2 billion for the year.

The company, which produced 6.12 million ounces in 2015, expects all-in sustaining costs of $775-$825 per ounce for the year, largely lower than $831 per ounce a year earlier.

The Toronto, Ontario-based miner, which has one of the highest debt loads of any gold miner, has been selling its non-core assets in order to reduce debt. It said in January it had met its $3 billion debt-reduction target.

Capital expenditures for 2016 were forecast at $1.35 billion-$1.65 billion, compared with 2015 capital expenditures of $1.51 billion.

Gold XAU= GCv1 has been hit by a slowdown in China's growth, the world's top consumer, a global supply glut and a strong dollar .DXY.

The company also reported higher-than-expected quarterly profits as sale of its non-core assets helped offset the dip in gold prices.

Net loss attributable to Barrick was $2.62 billion, or $2.25 per share, in the quarter ended Dec. 31, compared with a loss of $2.85 billion, or $2.45 per share, a year earlier.

Excluding items, it reported a profit of 8 cents per share, bigger than the average analysts' estimate of 6 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.   Continued...

 
Barrick Gold Corp Chairman of the board John Thornton speaks during their annual general meeting for shareholders in Toronto, April 28, 2015. REUTERS/Mark Blinch