Kumba Iron Ore: Shares leap as earnings soar 20%

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Kumba Iron Ore surged as much as 7.4 percent, the most in more than a year, in intraday trading yesterday after the Anglo American unit said profit for the year to December would rise at least 20 percent.

Headline earnings a share climbed from R37.97 last year, the company said. The median of 17 analysts estimates is for profit of R46.46 a share. The results will be released on or about February 11.

Profit increased after iron ore export prices rose and the rand weakened against the dollar, it said.

The rand has depreciated 18 percent against the US currency this year. Ore with 62 percent iron content delivered to the Chinese port of Tianjin has traded at an average of $135.37 (R1 394) a dry ton this year, 5.5 percent more than last year, according to The Steel Index.

The earnings had been “partially offset by lower production at the Sishen mine”, Africa’s largest iron ore operation, it said.

Kumba shares closed 7.05 percent higher at R423. – Bloomberg

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