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Copper miner Phelps Dodge 4th-quarter profit swells on sharply higher copper prices

Copper miner Phelps Dodge 4th-quarter profit swells on sharply higher copper prices

Phelps Dodge Corp., which has agreed to a buyout by copper mining rival Freeport McMoran Copper & Gold Inc., said Monday its fourth-quarter earnings surged due to sharply higher copper prices, even as production slipped.
Net income grew to $1.32 billion (euro1.02 billion), or $6.50 (euro5.03) per share, in the three months ended Dec. 31 from $121.3 million (euro93.88 million), or 60 cents per share, in the prior-year period.
Revenue surged 43 percent to $3.24 billion (euro2.51 billion) from $2.26 billion (euro1.75 billion) a year ago. Costs rose a more modest 7 percent to $1.88 billion (euro1.45 billion).
The latest quarter included a special gain of $364.1 million (euro281.79 million), or $1.79 (euro1.39) per share, while the 2005 quarter included a one-time charge of $204.2 million (euro158.04 million), or $1.01 (euro.78) per share. Excluding the gain in the latest quarter, Phelps Dodge would have earned $ (euro) $4.71 (euro3.65) a share.
Analysts polled by Thomson Financial forecast earnings of $4.28 (euro3.31) per share, excluding one-time items, on $3.49 billion (euro2.7 billion) in sales.
Copper production fell slightly to 320,000 tons from 321,800 tons in year-earlier quarter. But copper prices averaged $3.206 (euro2.48) per pound on the London Metal Exchange, up sharply from $1.951 (euro1.51) in the year-ago quarter and down slightly from the $3.479 (euro2.69) averaged in the third quarter.
Molybdenum production grew to 16.8 million pounds from 14.5 million pounds.
For the full year, earnings increased to $3.02 billion (euro2.34 billion), or $14.83 (euro11.48) per share, from $1.55 billion (euro1.2 billion), or $7.69 (euro5.95) per share. Revenue rose to $11.91 billion (euro9.22 billion) from $8.29 billion (euro6.42 billion).
Phelps Dodge agreed in November to a $25.9 billion (euro20.04 billion) cash-and-stock takeover by Freeport McMoran. The deal, expected to close in March, would create the world's largest publicly traded copper company.


Updated : 2021-04-17 11:27 GMT+08:00