Amplats flags up to 600% earnings boost

Anglo American Platinum has flagged a likely plus-500% increase in earnings ahead of its half-year results to be released on July 26.

 Anglo American Platinum’s Amandelbult operation in South Africa

Anglo American Platinum’s Amandelbult operation in South Africa

In accordance with JSE listing requirements, the company said headline earnings and headline earnings per share for the six months to June 30 were expected to increase 560% and 578% respectively, compared with the previous corresponding period.

Basic earnings and earnings per share could be 581% and 600% higher, at R45.5-R46.8 billion and 17,300-17,795c per share respectively, Amplats said.

The likely increase was primarily due to a 29% increase in the rand basket price, plus the prior period was materially impacted by South Africa's national lockdown to curb COVID-19.

The company separately said its platinum group metals production was 59% higher in the June quarter, compared with a year earlier, at 601,500 ounces.

Refined PGMS production was 233% higher at 1.35 million ounces due to operational stability following the rebuild and recommissioning of the ACP plant in November.

Full-year metal-in-concentrate PGM production guidance was revised from 4.2-4.6Moz to 4.2-4.4Moz, while refined PGM production guidance was lifted from 4.6-5Moz to 4.8-5Moz.

"However, refined production is subject to rising infection rates from COVID-19, as well as potential Eskom power disruptions in the second half of the year," the company said.

CEO Natascha Viljoen said while operations had not been directly affected by the recent unrest in South Africa, the company had "stringent risk management procedures" incorporated into its response plans.

"Risks to our supply chain are being monitored and we continue to work on ways to support our communities that may feel the knock-on impacts of the disruptions caused by the unrest," she said.

The Minerals Council South Africa last week condemned the violence and looting which spread through parts of the country, particularly KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, following the jailing of former president Jacob Zuma.

Amplats shares (JSE: AMS) were unchanged at 161,576c this afternoon.

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