Tahoe suffers $18m Q4 loss as Escobal shutdown saga drags on – by Henry Lazenby (MiningWeekly.com – February 24, 2018)

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VANCOUVER (miningweekly.com) – Precious metals producer Tahoe Resources has recorded an $18-million loss for the fourth quarter ended December 31, as its flagship Escobal silver mine, in Guatemala, lingers on care and maintenance.

The TSX- and NYSE-listed miner reported an adjusted comparative loss of $17.7-million, or $0.06 a share, for the period, contrasting against headline earnings of $18.4-million, or $0.06 a share, in the same period of 2017. This was well below average analyst estimates, calling for nil cents a share.

The company talked up the rising importance of its gold portfolio, as Escobal – the world’s third largest silver producer – remains closed because of a mining licence dispute. The net loss for the period came to $18-million, or $0.06 a share, compared with profit of $300 000, or nil per share, in the same period of 2016.

For full-year 2017, net earnings came to $81.8-million, or $0.26 a share, down 31% year-on-year from $117.9-million, or $0.41 a share, in 2016. Full-year adjusted earnings fell to $84-million, or $0.27 a share, from $180.4-million, or $0.62 a share, in 2016.

As a result of the legal impasse in Guatemala, Tahoe did not produce any silver in the fourth quarter, resulting in full-year output dropping 54% over 2016 silver production.

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