Top ten write-downs of the summer
As quarterly results come rolling in so do a slew of write-downs. With gold hitting record lows this past quarter and commodity prices dropping on all fronts, we've compiled a list of the top 10 write-downs of the summer.
#1 Barrick Gold Corp: $8.7 billion
Coming in at number one with the highest write-down this summer is Canada's Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) which took a $8.7 billion hit this week – bringing its year-to-date total impairments to $13 billion. The largest chunk is related to the Chilean Pascua Lama project, which is responsible for $5.1 billion in impairments.
#2 Newcrest Mining: $5-6 billion
In June, one of Australia's largest gold miners infuriated investors as it announced a $5 to $6 billion write-down. Newcrest Mining (TSX:NM) reassured shareholders that it had wide-ranging spending cuts in mind, including a near 50% reduction in exploration expenses.
#3 AngloGold Ashanti: $2.6 billion
AngloGold Ashanti (NYSE:AU) doesn't come close to Barrick’s near $9-billion write-down but the gold producer did announce a hit of up to $2.6 billion. The company has had serious labour issues in South Africa over the past year with unions demanding major wage increases.
#4 Kinross Gold: $2.2 billion
In third spot is Canadian-based gold miner Kinross (NYSE:KGC). The company booked a $2.29 billion non-cash write-down while watching revenues fall below $1 billion to $968 million.
#5 GoldCorp: $1.9 billion
Another Canadian gold miner comes in fifth place: GoldCorp (NYSE:GG) logged a $1.96 billion charge this quarter. The write-down is related to the “value of exploration potential” at the company’s Peñasquito mine in Mexico.
“Peñasquito continues to possess strong exploration upside.” GoldCorp said in a statement. “But due to lower metals prices, the current in situ market value of exploration potential has decreased significantly.”
#6 Newmont Mining: $1.8 billion
Nearly tied with GoldCorp is Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) which took a $1.8 billion impairment charge related to two Australian mines in Boddington and Tanami.
You haven’t heard the last of Barrick’s suffering. The company owns a 73.9% equity interest in African Barrick Gold (LON:ABG) which booked $727 million in charges this quarter. ABG is Tanzania's largest gold miner.
#8 Osisko Mining: $488 million
Another Canadian company has made the top ten: Osisko Mining (TSE:OSK), with an $1.8 billion market cap, was not spared this quarter, booking $488 million as a result of low bullion prices.