Sandfire Resources has posted a modest slide in its first-half profit as a result of lower prices for its primary commodity, copper.
The company recorded a profit of $30.56 million, down 9% on the previous corresponding period, although its revenue jumped by 6% to $264.2 million.
The mid-tier miner, which owns and operates the DeGrussa copper-gold mine near Meekatharra, said it would pay an interim dividend of 3c per share on March 26 to shareholders on the register.
The company’s Managing Director, Mr Karl Simich, said it was important to note that the profit decline stemmed from the “robust” Aussie dollar and copper and gold price.
“In addition, our operations stand to benefit from any further decline in the Australian currency against the US Dollar, as our operating costs are denominated in Australian dollars, as well as any reductions in diesel prices,” said Mr Simich.
According to The West Australian, Sandfire increased copper production to 32,500 tonnes from 30,098 in the previous corresponding period and also lifted gold production to 18,330 ounces from 14, 437 ounces compared to last year’s first half result.
Mr Simich said that the increased output and the progress of the company’s development program put Sandfire in a strong position for future growth.
“The DeGrussa Copper Mine continues to perform strongly. The first development ore in the Conductor 4 deposit was recently intersected, heralding the beginning of a new chapter in the underground operation and the development program is on target for first stope ore to be achieved from early fiscal 2016,” he said.
Mr Simich added that the Group’s major underground exploration program was continuing to target near-mine and lateral extensions and potential new discoveries.
Sandfire held cash of $45.8 million at the end of December. Its shares were steady at $4.48 shortly before the close of trade.