Miner Fortescue returns record dividend as profit leaps

21 Août, 2017, 06:18 | Author: Marc Bacque
  • Fortescue investor presentation

Australia's third-largest iron ore producer released its full year figures to the market this morning and reported a net profit of $US2.1 billion ($2.6 billion) - up 112 per cent on last year.

Fortescue's cash position at the end of the financial year was $US1.8 billion, with net gearing reduced to 21 per cent following the repayment of $US2.7 billion in debt and refinancing of an additional $US1.5 billion.

"The whole team has delivered these outstanding results against our key stretch targets of safety, production and cost", he said.

The Perth-based company will pay a final dividend of 25 Australian cents.

The company will reward shareholders with a dividend of 25¢ a share, up from 12¢ previous year.

The company's guidance for fiscal 2018 is to ship 170 million tonnes of iron ore.

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Fortescue reported a 19 per cent increase in revenue to $US8.45 billion as the average Platts 62 CFR iron ore price rose to $US69.53 per dry metric tonne (dmt), up from $US51.37/dmt a year earlier.

"It is a remarkable story", he said.

Fortescue and other miners are under pressure to pay bigger dividends as their cash reserves rise amid improvements in prices of iron ore and other industrial commodities. "They've also driven their costs down, so the combination is a very handsome profit, a much lower debt level and a very high dividend for shareholders".

"It's hard to see them going any lower", he said.

"They have climbed their mountain and they are now enjoying the rewards that come with that".

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