(Rewrites with analyst expectations, improved cost forecast)
VANCOUVER, July 26 (Reuters) - Canadian gold producer Goldcorp Inc reported better-than-expected earnings on Wednesday and lowered its forecast for costs this year, while also announcing that its chief financial officer, Russell Ball, would leave the company.
Vancouver-based Goldcorp said Jason Attew, who is Goldcorp's senior vice president of corporate development and strategy, would replace Ball, who was leaving as "part of a planned succession".
Goldcorp, which is the world's fourth-biggest gold producer by market value, reported net earnings of $135 million, or 16 cents per share, in the second quarter ended June 30.
That compared with a loss of $78 million, or 9 cents per share, a year earlier when production slumped due to a maintenance shutdown and slow restart at its biggest mine, Penasquito, in Mexico.
Adjusted for one-off items, earnings were 12 cents a share, ahead of analyst estimates of 8 cents a share, on average, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Goldcorp left unchanged its 2017 gold production forecast at approximately 2.5 million ounces. But it reduced its forecast for all-in sustaining costs, the industry benchmark, to $825 an ounce from $850 before, reflecting progress on its cost reduction program.
The company produced 635,000 ounces of gold in the second quarter at $800 an ounce. That compared with 613,000 ounces at a cost of $1,067 per ounce in the second quarter of 2016. (Reporting by Nicole Mordant in Vancouver and John Benny in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Grant McCool)