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Barrick Gold tops earnings estimates for the quarter

Canadian miner Barrick Gold topped earnings estimates for the March quarter, bolstered by a rally in bullion prices during the period.

Net earnings surged 146% to $US295 million from $US120 million a year ago.

Revenue totaled $US2.74 billion for the quarter, up from $US2.64 billion in the first quarter of 2023.

After an early rise, Barrick shares ended Wednesday down 1.7%, even though gold prices shook off some of their significant losses from Tuesday.

Gold prices were up around 8% to $US2,231 per ounce in the January-March quarter, driven by buying from central banks and hopes that the Federal Reserve could cut interest rates as early as June.

However, those hopes have faded, though gold prices surged strongly in April to a peak of $US2,448 an ounce before sharply retreating on the final day of the month.

Still, Barrick, the world’s second-largest gold miner after Newmont (and Nevada Gold Mines partner), reported that its average realized gold prices rose to $US2,075 per ounce from $US1,902 per ounce a year earlier.

The key cost measure, All-in Sustaining Costs (AISC) per ounce of gold, jumped just over 7% in the quarter to $US1,474 in the first quarter, up from $US1,370 per ounce a year earlier.

The higher gold price and smaller rise in costs helped offset a slight dip in gold production for the quarter, falling to 940,000 ounces in the quarter ended March 31, from 952,000 ounces a year earlier. Analysts had estimated 947,000 ounces.

Looking ahead to the rest of the year, Barrick said it expects production to increase steadily through the year, with its Pueblo Viejo gold mine in the Dominican Republic ramping up from the second quarter.