Anglo American lowers output guidance after quarterly drop

Moranbah North mine. (Image courtesy of Anglo American | Flickr.)

Anglo American’s first-quarter production fell 10% year on year, partly owing to operations running at reduced capacity because of higher rates of covid-19 infections among workers, it said on Thursday.

The London-listed company also lowered full-year guidance on volumes for metals including platinum, iron ore and metallurgical coal to reflect inflationary price pressure that lifts its costs per unit of production.

Copper production fell 13% to 139,500 tonnes in the first quarter, from 160,300 tonnes in the same period last year, because of lower grades and is expected to reach between 660,000 and 750,000 tonnes for the full year.

Full-year unit cost guidance for copper production rose 5% to $0.147 per pound.

Iron ore production fell by 19% because of high rainfall at its Kumba and Minas-Rio operations, prompting a lowering of full-year guidance to between 60 million and 64 million tonnes from 63 million to 67 million tonnes previously.

Metallurgical coal production decreased by 32% while concentrate metal production from its platinum group metals operations in South Africa slipped by 6%, hit by high rainfall at Mogalakwena. Full-year guidance was lowered to between 3.9 million and 4.3 million ounces, from 4.1 million to 4.5 million ounces previously.

Rough diamond production, however, increased by 25% thanks to less disruption from rainfall in Botswana.

(By Clara Denina; Editing by David Goodman)

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