The decision by Newmont Mining to take $3.4 billion hit for “impairments and revaluation” including $547 million in impairments of stockpiles and ore on leach pads and $2.9 billion in impairments of property, plant and mine development and other long-term assets at Boddington and Tanami in Australia and Long Canyon in Nevada—all contributed to a net loss of $2.5 billion or $5.06 per basic share for gold the miner in 2013.
This compares to Newmont’s 2012 net income of $1.9 billion or $3.80 per share. For the fourth-quarter 2013, Newmont reported a net loss of $1.17 million or $2.34 per share, compared to a profit of $673 million or $1.30 per share for the fourth-quarter 2012.
Despite the impairments, Newmont CEO Gary Goldberg said the company “achieved the top end of our gold production guidance of 5.1 million ounces, brought Akyem and the Phoenix Copper Leach operations into commercial production on time and on budget, and divested approximately $600 million in non-core assets in 2013.”
While last year’s gold production was up 2% from 2012, copper production increased slightly from 143 million pounds in 2012 to 144 million pounds in 2013.
Newmont also noted that it had achieved a 6% reduction in gold all-in sustaining costs, including a 14% reduction in the fourth quarter of 2013. Gold all-in sustaining costs were $1,104 per ounce last year, down from $1,177 in 2012. Gold and copper costs applicable to sales were $761 per ounce and $4.42 per pound, respectively, in line with 2013 outlook, but up from $677 per ounce and $2.34 per pound in 2012.
Newmont reported an adjusted net income of $695 million or $1.40 per share in 2013, which includes a negative impact of $1.11 per share related to impairments of stockpiles and ore on leach pad.
Meanwhile, the company outlined a three-year attributable production plan calling for 4.6 million to 4.9 million attributable gold ounces this year, 4.8 million to 5.2 million gold ounces in 2015, and 4.8 million to 5.2 million ounces in 2015.
This year all-in sustaining costs are anticipated to be between $1,075 and $1,175 per gold ounce and $2.75-$2.95 per pound of copper. Gold all-in sustaining costs are expected to decline by 8% from 2014 through 2016, as $600 million to $700 million of additional planned cost and efficiency improvements are expect to more than offset the anticipated impact from inflation.
“Gold costs applicable to sales (CAS) is expected to remain essentially flat over the three-year period compared to 2013 levels while copper CAS is expected to improve as the Batu Hijau mine plan progresses, reaching higher grade ore,” said Newmont.
Total gold CAS is expected to be $720-$790 per gold ounce this year, while total copper CAS is expected to be $2 to $2.25/lb.
Newmont expects to invest $1.3 billion to $1.4 billion in consolidated capex this year. Total capex will be reduced by 25% this year.
The company reported gold reserves of 88.4 million ounces and copper reserves of 8.1 billion pounds at year-end 2013, which represents an 11% reduction in gold reserves and a 15% reduction in copper reserves, due to lower gold and copper pricing as well as mine plan and model changes.
Newmont also reported an increase in attributable measured and indicated gold and copper resources of 27.8 million ounces and 7.6 billion pounds, respectively for 2013. Attributable silver reserves last year were 153 million ounces, while attributable measured and indicated resources were 72 million ounces of silver.
Meanwhile, Newmont also announced Thursday that it has received commitments from several banks for a five-year, unsecured term loan of $575 million, which is intended to repay $575 million of convertible debt maturing in July 2014.