Teck Resources flags fourth-quarter profit coming below estimates

Teck Resources, (TSX:TECK.A | TECK.B)(NYSE:TCK), Canada’s largest diversified miner, announced late on Thursday it expected fourth-quarter profits to be significantly below estimates, due to the low price of Canadian oil at the end of 2018, issues at its operations in Trail, B.C., and a decline in commodity prices.

The Vancouver-based mining giant said all those factors combined, plus inventory valuations, would reduce its earnings for the period  by C$0.30 per share , while earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) will be down by C$195 million (about $148m).

The low price of Canadian oil at the end of 2018, issues at its operations in Trail, B.C., and a decline in commodity prices weighed in the miner's Q4 results.

Teck says it expects a loss of 15 cents per share in its energy business unit due to the low price for Western Canadian Select oil, which dropped from $29.80 per barrel in early October to a low of $6.42 in late November, before ending the year at $24.66.

Canadian oil has climbed this year, helped by mandatory production limits by the Alberta government and is now more than $40 per barrel.

The miner’s Trail Operations, in turn, faced ongoing supply interruptions from some traditional third-party suppliers in the three months to the end of December, it said.  As a result, the company expects a loss of 5 cents per share, which adds to a charge of 10 cents per share due to weak commodity prices in the fourth quarter.

The company will record pre-tax inventory write-downs totalling C$80 million (about $61m) due to a decline in commodity prices during the fourth quarter, it added.

Teck had reported lower-than-expected third-quarter earnings, hit by declining commodity prices and higher costs. Full financial results will be announced on Feb. 13.