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Gold Fields swings into full-year loss but declares dividend

Thursday, 18 February 2016

GOLD Fields reported a loss for its 2015 financial year, with falling revenue caused by lower output and a reduced gold price in the year.

However, the gold miner reported it would pay a final dividend of 21 South African cents per share.

Gold Fields, which has mines in Australia, SA, Ghana and Peru, said revenue fell by 11% to $2.55bn for the year to end-December, driven down by a 9% lower gold price of $1,140/oz and a 3% reduction in gold output to 2.16-million ounces “due to lower production at all the mines except for Tarkwa and St Ives”.

Including $300m of impairments made in the final quarter of the year, mainly against its Far South East prospect in the Philippines, its Damang mine in Ghana and Darlot in Australia, Gold Fields reported a net loss of $242m for the year, compared with net earnings of $13m a year earlier.

Gold Fields posted a headline loss of $28m compared with earnings of $27m before.

The all-in cost for the year fell to $1,026/oz from $1,087/oz the year before, with currencies in the countries where Gold Fields operates weakening against the dollar, most noticeably in SA and Australia.

Gold Fields declared a final dividend of 21 South African cents, bringing its total dividend payment for the year to 25c.

Looking ahead, Gold Fields said it expected to have production this year of between 2.05-million and 2.1-million ounces, with output in Australia, its largest source of gold, falling to 905,000oz and production at the copper and gold Cerro Corona mine in Peru dropping to 260,000 gold equivalent ounces.

The Damang mine in Ghana is under review and is forecast to have lower production.

The standout mine this year is predicted to be the South Deep mine in SA, where gold production will increase by 30% to 257,000oz. South Deep is a large, mechanised mine that is still ramping up to full production after years of difficulties.

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