24/07/2009 - 11:18

Newmont starts up Boddington gold mine

24/07/2009 - 11:18

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Newmont Mining Corporation has revised down its full-year gold sales forecast as the $US3 billion Boddington gold project started operations yesterday, slightly behind schedule.

Newmont Mining Corporation has revised down its full-year gold sales forecast as the $US3 billion Boddington gold project started operations yesterday, slightly behind schedule.

In its quarterly report released today, Newmont said the Boddington start-up commenced yesterday and will be ramping up towards commercial production, which is expected to take 12 months.

As a result of the slightly delayed start-up, Newmont revised down its 2009 equity gold sales forecast from between 1.5-1.6 million ounces to 1.4-1.5 million ounces.

"[This is] primarily related to lower expected gold sales at Boddington with the start-up occurring near the back end of our range," Newmont said.

"The Company also updated the outlook for regional costs applicable to sales to between $US460 and $500 per ounce, up slightly from the previously announced outlook of between $440 and $480 per ounce, primarily as a result of the delayed start-up at Boddington."

Meantime, Newmont says its second-quarter profit sank 40 per cent, reflecting lower copper prices and costs related to its purchase of the remaining stake in Boddington from AngloGold Ashanti earlier this year.

The company reported a profit of $US162 million ($A198.66 million), or 33 cents per share, compared with $US271 million ($A332.33 million), or 59 cents per share, a year ago.

Revenue grew 7 per cent, to $US1.6 billion ($A1.96 billion) from $US1.5 billion ($A1.84 billion).

Results include items such as a $US42 million ($A51.51 million) charge related to the purchase of the remaining stake in Boddington open-pit project. Excluding those items, Newmont posted a profit 43 cents per share.

Thomson Reuters says analysts estimated a profit of 47 cents per share on revenue of $US1.64 billion ($A2.01 billion). Analysts typically exclude one-time items.

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