Engineering & Mining Journal

MAY 2019

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Page 30 of 83

GOLD MINERS ROUNDUP MAY 2019 • E&MJ 29 No. 8 Gold Fields (2M oz) South Africa's Gold Fields Ltd. reported headline earnings for 2018 of $60.6 mil- lion, down from $209.9 million in 2017. The "normalized profit" came to $26.9 million, down from more than $153 million the year prior. Net debt was logged at $1.6 billion for the year, up roughly 24% yoy. Total gold output fell roughly 6%, to the lowest level since 2013, and was down 5% from the average for the compa- ny for the five preceding years. The com- pany milled roughly the same amount of ore in 2018 as it did in 2017. The yoy decline in total output was linked to a number of factors. A strike and subsequent labor action, as well as "geotechnical constraints" at South Deep (South Africa) "had a profound impact on production" there, to the tune of a 44% decline yoy. Production was off by 7% at Tarkwa (Ghana) as part of a "change in strategy," the company reported. Low- er grade led to a slight decrease in pro- duction yoy at Agnew (Australia) and at Granny Smith (Australia). Production rose 26% at Damang (Ghana) due to fleet performance improvements. Higher cop- per production led to a 2% increase in "equivalent gold production" at Cerro Co- rona (Peru). And a new underground mine at the St. Ives project (Australia) contrib- uted to a slight uptick in total output yoy. The company labeled 2018 as "the peak year of capital spent on new projects." The company logged $814 million, of which $334 million was filed as "mine cash flow," which includes "project capital." In 2018, AISC rose roughly 3% yoy to the highest level since 2015. It was down 6% from the average for the company for the five preceding years. The average price received fell $4 yoy to hit what essentially is the average for the company for the pre- vious five years. The difference between price received and AISC was $270, the lowest for the miners reviewed by E&MJ. Last year, the company bought into the Asanko project (Ghana). In March 2018, it entered a 50/50 joint venture with Asanko Gold and acquired a 90% interest in the namesake mine, which produced 223,000 oz in 2018. The company reported it plans capital expenditures reaching $633 million in 2019. Gruyere (Australia) will ramp up production starting in Q1, with first gold calendared for Q2. Asanko's production will contribute to the company's numbers this year as well. Damang is expected to mine higher grade ore starting in H1. The company reports it expects to pro- duce between 2.13 million and 2.18 mil- lion oz at an AISC of between $980 and $995/oz. Gold Fields reported that at year-end, it had 50.3 million oz of attributable gold reserves. No. 9 Agnico Eagle (1.6M oz) Headquartered in Ontario, Canada, Agni- co Eagle Mines Ltd. reported a net loss of $326.7 million for 2018. For the year prior, it reported a net income of $240 million. In 2018, the company increased its long-term debt by 25% yoy. Total gold output in 2018 fell roughly 5% yoy to the lowest point since 2014, but was up about 8% over the average for the company for the five preceding years. Production fell by a whopping 29% at Meadowbank (Canada), slightly to 344,000 oz at La Ronde (Canada), and at Lapa (Canada), Kittila (Finland), and Creston Mascota (Mexico). Meadow- bank is transitioning out of full produc- tion, the company reported. Production rose by 10% to 350,000 oz at Canadian Malarctic, slightly at Pinos Altos (Mexi- co) and La India (Mexico), and at Goldex (Canada). LaRonde Zone 5 mine, basical- ly an expansion project targeting some 225,000 oz in mineral reserves, came online in 2018 and contributed 18,620 oz to the company's total gold output. The miner milled roughly 2% less ore yoy. AISC was up about 9% yoy to the high- est point since 2014. It was up only slight- ly over the average for the company for the preceding five years. The average realized price received per oz was up $5 yoy and was $7 above the average for the company for the preceding five years. The difference between price and AISC was $389.

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