UPDATE 2-Goldcorp posts big loss on writedown, stock drops

Thu Feb 19, 2015 11:55am EST
 
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(Adds 2014 capital expenditures, stock price, analyst comment, reference to Barrick results)

By Susan Taylor

TORONTO Feb 19 (Reuters) - Goldcorp Inc posted a hefty loss on Thursday as it took a $2.3 billion impairment charge on a new mine in Argentina, the second multi-billion dollar writedown from a top gold miner in as many days.

Goldcorp, the world's biggest gold producer by market value, reported a $2.4 billion fourth-quarter net loss more than double last year's, as well as adjusted earnings that missed analysts forecasts, sending its shares down 5 percent.

The charge follows an even larger $2.8 billion writedown reported by Barrick Gold Corp, the world's top gold producer by production. Barrick also said it will sell mines in Papua New Guinea and Australia to help cut debt by at least $3 billion by year-end.

Shares in Barrick, which reported results on Wednesday after the market closed, rose nearly 6 percent.

Goldcorp said its quarterly adjusted earnings fell to 7 cents a share from 9 cents last year, trailing the average analyst estimate of 12 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

RBC Capital Markets analyst Stephen Walker said the miss reflects the timing of concentrate sales, which could boost first-quarter results.

Goldcorp said its 2015 outlook is brighter, as production climbs and spending drops.   Continued...