Gold rally drives impressive results for Canadian miners – by Ian McGugan (Globe and Mail – July 28, 2016)

A flurry of earnings results from three of Canada’s largest gold miners show that this year’s bullion boom is being reflected in major improvements across the industry’s bottom line.

After years of decline, the price of gold has jumped 25 per cent since January as investors have sought refuge from slumping yields on savings accounts and bonds.

The rush to precious metals has given mining stocks a powerful boost. Shares of Barrick Gold Corp. and Kinross Gold Corp. have more than doubled since the start of the year, while Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd. (up 98 per cent) has also achieved eye-popping gains. Results released after the market closed on Wednesday offer hope that more gains may be ahead, although it also hinted at some potential problems.

Agnico Eagle was a standout, reporting profit of $19-million (U.S.) for the most recent quarter, nearly double the $10.1-million it generated in the same period a year earlier. The miner beat expectations for revenue and adjusted earnings and announced that it was boosting its dividend by 25 per cent (to 10 cents a quarter from 8 cents). It also said it had received the final permit necessary for construction to begin at its Meliadine gold project in Nunavut.

Barrick also reported a solid quarter, with profit of $138-million, or 12 cents a share, on revenue of $2.01-billion. While the earnings figures lagged forecasts, this quarter’s bottom line was a major improvement from a loss of $9-million in the same period last year.

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