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S.Africa's Amplats H1 earnings soar, declares record dividend

07/26/2021 | 05:54am EDT
FILE PHOTO - A pit head is seen at the Tumela Mine in Thabazimbi

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) -South African miner Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) on Monday posted a near 7-fold increase in half-year earnings and paid a record dividend as higher metals prices and increased output boosted profit, sending its shares higher.

The precious metals miner declared a record interim dividend of 175 rand per share, including a base dividend and a special dividend, compared to 10.23 rand a year earlier.

Headline earnings per share, the main profit measure used in South Africa, for the six months ended June 30 surged 572% to 176.47 rand ($11.88) per share versus 26.27 rand a year earlier.

"It is a record payout on the back of record results," said Amplats CFO Craig Miller.

Shares in Amplats, an Anglo American subsidiary, gained 6.26% by 0858 GMT.

High prices for metals extracted by Amplats, including platinum, palladium and rhodium, have boosted profit with the average rand prices for the platinum group metals (PGM) it mines up 29% during the period.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) during the period rose 385% to a record 63.3 billion rand with net cash at 57.6 billion rand.

The Johannesburg-listed miner said refined production during the half-year jumped 128% to 2,326,700 ounces, boosted by the completion of the rebuild of unit A at its Anglo Converter Plant (ACP) processing facility in 2020.

Amplats declared force majeure and cut its production outlook after an explosion at the ACP plant last year halted processing activity.

The miner tightened its PGM annual production guidance to between 4.2 to 4.4 million ounces from between 4.2 to 4.6 million ounces, due to lower third-party receipts and the impact of rising COVID-19 infections on output.

Amplats expects platinum to be in surplus in 2021 before shifting to deficit in the next few years boosted by increased demand.

($1 = 14.8542 rand)

(Reporting by Tanisha Heiberg; Editing by Edmund Blair and David Evans)

ę Reuters 2021
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