AngloGold sees return to profit as it exits South Africa mines

By Ana Monteiro

(Bloomberg) – AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. said it returned to profit in the first half after the world’s third-biggest producer of the metal realised better prices for its output and it exited some South African operations.

So-called headline earnings, which exclude one-time items, probably ranged from $91 million to 108 million in the six months ended June 30 from a loss of $89 million a year earlier, the Johannesburg-based company said in a statement Thursday.

Production climbed 4 percent to 1.59 million ounces from a year earlier, while the average gold price received rose 6 percent, it said. AngloGold halved its South African output after selling the Kopanang and Moab Khotsong mines in February, following the closure of the TauTona mine announced last year. Operations outside the country now account for 87 percent of the company’s business.

AngloGold’s South African mines have dragged down the company’s performance in recent quarters as ageing infrastructure, reserve depletion and accidents have raised costs and reduced production.

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