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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Investorideas.com - Barrick (NYSE:ABX; TSX:ABX) Reports Q1 2010 Financial and Operating Results

Investorideas.com - Barrick (NYSE:ABX; TSX:ABX) Reports Q1 2010 Financial and Operating Results


April 28, 2010 (Investorideas.com Mining stocks newswire)

FIRST QUARTER REPORT 2010
Based on US GAAP and expressed in US dollars

Highlights

Reported Q1 net income was a record $758 million ($0.77 per share). Adjusted Q1 net income rose 149% to $741 million ($0.75 per share)(1) from $298 million ($0.34 per share) in Q1 2009, reflecting higher production and sales in conjunction with lower total cash costs and higher realized prices for both gold and copper. Operating cash flow more than tripled to a record $1.05 billion from $349 million in the same prior year period.

Q1 gold production was up 19% to 2.08 million ounces at total cash costs of $442 per ounce or net cash costs of $342 per ounce(1), which were $42 per ounce and $62 per ounce below prior year period total cash costs and net cash costs, respectively. The Company is on track with its guidance to increase production in 2010 to 7.6-8.0 million ounces at lower total cash costs of $425-$455 per ounce or net cash costs of $345-$375 per ounce(2).

The Cortez Hills project was completed during the quarter on time and budget and contributed strongly to Q1 results. The entire Cortez property continues to be on track to achieve its original production guidance of 1.08-1.12 million ounces of gold in 2010 at total cash costs of $295-$315 per ounce. In mid-April, the U.S. District Court issued a decision allowing mining to continue at Cortez Hills (subject to certain restrictions on ore transportation and dewatering) pending completion of a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement. The Company anticipates a Record of Decision will be issued by the Bureau of Land Management by year-end, at which point it is expected that the operation will revert to its original scope.


Construction of the Pueblo Viejo and Pascua-Lama projects is on schedule and expected to be in line with their respective pre-production capital budgets. At full capacity and combined with Cortez Hills, these projects are forecast to contribute about 2.4 million ounces(3) of annual production at low cash costs.

Barrick completed its acquisition of an additional 25% interest in the Cerro Casale project in Chile during the quarter for consideration of approximately $474 million and now owns a 75% interest in and has control of one of the world's largest undeveloped gold-copper deposits.
The initial public offering for African Barrick Gold plc ("ABG"), which holds Barrick's previously held African gold mining operations and exploration properties, closed in March and the shares of ABG were admitted to trading on the London Stock Exchange's main market for listed securities. Total net proceeds of the offering were $882 million. Barrick currently holds an approximate 74% interest in ABG.
Barrick continues to maintain a strong financial position and the industry's only 'A' credit rating with quarter-end cash of $3.5 billion, an undrawn credit facility of $1.5 billion, robust operating cash flow and excellent access to debt markets.


Q1 production of 2.08 million ounces of gold was 19% higher at total cash costs of $442 per ounce which were 9% or $42 per ounce lower than the same prior year period, primarily due to strong performances from Lagunas Norte, Veladero and Cortez Hills. Net cash costs of $342 per ounce were 15% or $62 per ounce below the prior year period. The realized gold price for the quarter was $1,114 per ounce(4), $5 per ounce above the average spot price of $1,109 per ounce. Cash margins increased to 60% or $672 per ounce(4) from 47% or $431 per ounce in Q1 2009. Net cash margins increased to 69% or $772 per ounce(4) from 56% or $511 per ounce in the same prior year period.

Q1 adjusted net income rose 149% to $741 million ($0.75 per share), reflecting higher production and sales in conjunction with lower total cash costs and higher realized prices for both gold and copper, compared to adjusted net income of $298 million ($0.34 per share) in Q1 2009. Reported Q1 net income of $758 million ($0.77 per share) before net adjustments of $17 million was a Company record. Q1 operating cash flow more than tripled to a record $1.05 billion compared to $0.35 billion in the same period a year ago.

"We had a good start to the year with our operations performing well, and when combined with higher metal prices, the result was record earnings and operating cash flow for the quarter," said Aaron Regent, Barrick's President and CEO. "We are particularly pleased with the performance of our Cortez property. The Cortez Hills project was completed on time and budget, and the recent decision of the District Court in Nevada will allow it to continue operating. Cortez Hills is an impressive deposit and in 2010 the Cortez property will produce about 1.1 million ounces of gold at total cash costs of about $300 per ounce. We are also on track with the development of the other projects in our pipeline."
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