Freeport profit soars to $1.8 Billion

After telling its stockholders for the past several years it had been hit with multi billion dollar annual net losses, Freeport McMoRan, Inc  came out with a surprise last week while releasing its 4th quarter 2017 financial results. And that was that Freeport McMoRan’s net income for all of 2017 was $1.8 billion dollars and its financial debt had been reduced to $13.1 billion.

This was a huge change from previous financials reports released by the Phoenix based mining company.

For the year 2016 the company had a net loss of $4.2 billion  and a debt of $16 billion. 

During the year 2015 the net loss was shocking at $12.2 billion and the company’s debt had grown to $20.4 billion. 

In 2014 the debt was $19 billion and the net loss for that year was $2.9 billion.

This financial turn around  started in the third quarter of 2016 when the company had reported its first quarter profit  over the past few years at $217 million.  Ever since then until the 4th quarter of 2017 stockholders were told about quarterly profits ranging  from $217 million up to $292 million. It was announced last week that its fourth quarter net income last year had reached $1 billion.

Richard C. Adkerson,  President and CEO  of  Freeport McMoran, Inc said this all occurred “ during last year with our global teams’s focus on productivity and cost and capital disciplinary together with improved market conditions for copper produced solid results.”

Operating cash flow during the final quarter of last year was $1.7 billion.  Capital expenditures amounted to $390 million.  The company said it expects to spend $65 million this Year ( 2018 in exploration programs focusing on its existing resources in North American and South America\

During the 4th quarter 2017 consolidated sales at all of its operations amounted  to one billion pounds of copper  with the average price received for these sales at $3.21 a pound.. For gold the average price received for gold sold was d $1,285 an ounce and $9.79 pound for molly.  The average cost for introducing copper was $l.04 a pound. However, the costs for producing copper at its mines in Arizona and New Mexico  were much higher and the company said it was targeting a production cost for these mines in 2018 at $1.67 a pound.

Stockholder were told last week work has now started on Freeport’s new  Lone Star Copper mine near Safford in Eastern Arizona.  Production was expected to begin by the end of 2020. Estimated costs for the new Lone Start Project was  around $850 million  According to the company the Lone Star Mine was expected to benefit by using the infrastructure of the existing Safford Mine. 

Copper Oxide Production at the Lone star was projected to average 200 million pounds of copper per year.  The mine life was project at 20 years.  Freeport’s new mining project is about 75 miles East of Globe

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