February 16, 2012 / 12:17 PM / 6 years ago

UPDATE 1-Barrick operating profit lifted by strong gold price

TORONTO, Feb 16 (Reuters) - Barrick Gold, the world’s largest gold miner, said on Thursday its operating profit rose 15 percent, as a sharp increase in bullion prices and higher copper sales volumes lifted earnings.

Excluding an impairment charge on certain redundant power assets, an investment portfolio write-down and certain other one-time items, the company earned $1.17 billion, or $1.17 a share in the quarter ended Dec. 31. That compared with a year-ago profit of $1.02 billion, or $1.02 a share.

Net income in the fourth-quarter was $959 million, or 96 cents a share, down slightly from $961 million, or 96 cents, a year earlier.

On Wednesday, Canada’s No. 2 gold miner Goldcorp reported a 23 percent increase in its operating profit.

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