Freeport logs third-quarter loss after massive oil and gas write-down

Freeport logs third-quarter loss after massive oil and gas write-down

The company plans to further cut copper and molybdenum output, including a potential shutdown of its Sierrita mine (pictured) in Arizona. (Image courtesy of Freeport-McMoran)

U.S. copper miner Freeport-McMoRan (NYSE:FCX) was the second company to announce Thursday it has swung to a third-quarter loss after a massive write-down tied to the firm’s ailing oil and gas operations.

The Phoenix, Ariz.-based company, which is the U.S. largest miner by market value and revenue, logged a net loss was $3.8 billion, or $3.58 per share, compared with a net profit of $552 million, or 53 cents a share, in the same period last year.

Excluding one-time items, which totalled $3.7 billion, the adjusted loss was $156 million, or 15 cents a share, for the quarter ended September 30.

The company, under pressure from activist investor Carl Icahn and an ongoing commodities rout, also unveiled plans to further cut copper and molybdenum output, including a potential shutdown of its Sierrita mine in Arizona.

Freeport-McMoran stock has fallen almost 50% since the beginning of the year, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index has dropped roughly 2%.

The world's largest publicly traded copper producer’s shares, however, were up mid-morning in New York, trading 3.6% higher to $12.38 at 10:11 am ET.