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Coeur Mining, Inc. (NYSE:CDE)

Q2 2013 Results - Earnings Call Transcript

August8, 2013 01:00 pm ET

Executives

Bridget Freas, Director, Investor Relations

Mitchell Krebs - President and CEO

Peter Mitchell - SVP and CFO

Frank Hanagarne - SVP and COO

Don Birak - SVP, Exploration

Joe Philip - SVP and Chief Development Officer

Analysts

Jorge Beristain - Deutsche Bank

Brett Levy - Jefferies & Company

John Bridges - JPMorgan

Chris Lichtenheldt - Dundee Capital Market

Chris Thompson - Raymond James

Operator

Good afternoon. My name is Rebecca and I'll be your conference operator today. At this time, I would like to welcome everyone to the Second Quarter 2013 Financial Results Conference Call. All lines have been place on mute to prevent any background noise. After the speakers’ remarks, there will be a question-and-answer session. (Operator Instructions). Thank you. Ms. Bridget Freas you may begin your conference.

Bridget Freas

Thank you, Rebecca. Welcome everyone to our second quarter earnings conference call. I am Bridget Freas, Director of Investor Relations. This call is also being webcast on our website at www.coeur.com where we have posted slides to accompany our remarks. Telephonic replay of the call will be available on our website through August 22. We will be discussing some forward-looking and other preliminary information today and we caution our audience that such statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from projection.

Please review our cautionary statement shown on slide two and review the risk factors, including some that are specific to our industry described in our latest annual and quarterly financial reports filed with the US SEC and Canadian regulators. We will also be discussing some non-GAAP figures that we believe provide meaningful information to our investors. The appendices to our slides contain a reconciliation of the non-GAAP information to U.S. GAAP.

On the call today are Mitchell Krebs, President and Chief Executive Officer; Peter Mitchell, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer; Frank Hanagarne, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer; Don Birak, Senior Vice President of Exploration; and Joe Philip, Senior Vice President and Chief Development Officer.

Let’s get started. Mitch, please go ahead.

Mitchell Krebs

Okay. Thanks, Bridget. Welcome to everyone on the call and thank you for joining us today. We pick today for our earnings, no enterprises would be up strongly, so that’s a good day be announcing our quarterly results. We had a very solid quarter, which reflects a lot of hard work and dedication from the entire team. We have a 21% increase in silver production and 7% increase in gold production versus the first quarter. Operating cash flow was 63 million, or $0.63 per share. Operating the financial performance of Palmarejo was very strong due to higher grades, 24% higher silver production, and 23% higher gold production compared to the prior quarter.

San Bartolomé had another consisting quarter and Kensington was basically flat compared to the first quarter due to lower grades, but as positioned for a stronger second half. Rochester continued its ramp up but at a slower rate that we were targeting. We are anticipating a stronger second half now that additional crushing capacity is in place. We are reinvesting low levels of capital back in to our existing operations in order to maximize net cash flow. These projects at San Bartolome and Rochester are expected to be completed under budget and begin paying back by the end of the year.

We settle the outstanding claims dispute at Rochester which allowed us to accelerate our plans to further expand this operation for a minimal capital and we also closed the Orko Silver acquisition during the second quarter and recently completed a PEA for La Preciosa in Mexico. We are now kicking off a feasibility study there which is expected to be completed by the middle of next year. We’ll focus our efforts at La Preciosa on optimizing the project in order to maximize returns assuming current lower prices. We won’t proceed with construction at La Preciosa unless we feel we have a project that can generate an all-in rate of return that significantly exceeds our cost of capital, and we also ended June with $350 million of cash and available credit lines.

Our main focus remains the same as is has been since last year which is to find ways to maximize our net cash flow and achieve operational consistency. I am encourage with the progress we are showing and I am enthusiastic about the opportunities and targets we’ve identified to deliver positive net cash flow during the second half of the year. I think slide 5 does a good job of highlighting the four areas we are focusing on to maximize the company’s net cash flow. It's not just about cutting cost, it's about being sufficient and finding as many ways as we can to generate as much cash flow as possible.

In the area of revenue enhancements, we're prioritizing higher grades stopes for second half production at Kensington, or an increase in crushing capacity at Rochester for minimum capital, or completing the plant expansion at San Bartolome to drive higher throughput. We're going to increase the recovery rates at Palmarejo through optimization work which is expected to increase revenue and lower unit cost in the second half of the year and all of these represents recurring incremental revenue for the company that will mostly fall straight to the bottom line.

In the area of cost reduction, as we've already realized $19 million in cash operating cost savings in the first half of the year. We feel we're on track to generate an addition $8 million to $9 million in further operating cost reductions during the second half even with higher than planned production levels. Examples include reduction in outside of contract services, shorter waste hall distances and greater cost efficiency within the maintenance systems.

We have also reduced our second half exploration budget by 17%. Nearly all of these reductions will also continue to benefit the company in future periods. In the area of capital spending reductions, we completed at the end of June, a top to bottom review of all ongoing and planned capital expenditures, the mission was to limit capital investments only for projects that are either necessary for health and safety environmental protection, for the long term sustainability of the operation or expect to generate a significant return on that capital.

As a result, we have eliminated or deferred $24 million of capital projects in 2013, which reduces our projected 2013 CapEx by 18% to a range of $100 million to $110 million for the full year. As we look ahead to 2014, we're targeting CapEx of $80 million or less, which we believe will allow us to remain cash flow positive at current prices.

In the area of working capital improvements, we reduced our working capital needs by $12 million in the first half of 2013 by focusing on reductions in supply and material inventory and are targeting $30 million of additional working capital reductions by the end of the year.

We're maintaining our prior guidance for full year silver and gold production. We're also maintaining our guidance for cash operating cost for silver ounce despite lower gold byproduct credits which reflects the expected efficiency gains and cost reductions as outlined.

As we execute on our production and cost reduction targets, we continue the process of elevating worker safety to the point of becoming a true company value. That commitment was recognized this quarter by the Nevada Mining Association which honored Rochester with the first place safety award for surface operations, medium mine category for safety performance in calendar of 2012.

Company-wide our last time incident frequency rate declined 56% in the first half of the year which is something we're awfully pretty proud of and continue to work very hard off.

Now I would like to introduce Peter Mitchell who joined us in June as our Chief Financial Officer and has been doing a terrific job. I'll turn the call over to him to take us through the second quarter financial highlights.

Peter Mitchell

Thanks, Mitch. Slide seven highlights the second quarter financial results. We saw 5.2 million ounces of silver and 63,389 ounces of gold, generating about $205 million in metal sales and $62 million cash flow from operations.

Consolidated production costs were $143 million in the second quarter, on per ounce basis total production cost declined 3% for silver ounce, an increased 6% for gold ounce compared to the first quarter. Our G&A increased by $5 million sequentially with the majority of the increase coming from silver, (inaudible) and business development.

CapEx was approximately $27 million in the second quarter 2013; about twice as much as we spent in the first quarter as we made further progress on projects critical to company. Cash and cash equivalents were about $250 million in June 30, 2013. The company has a $100 million revolving credit facility which (inaudible) undrawn. The table on slide eight shows average realized prices, ounces produced and sold, cash operating costs on a per ounce basis.

Now I'll turn the call over to Frank Hanagarne now who will take us through the second quarter operational highlights.

Frank Hanagarne

Thanks Peter. Slide 10 indicates the second quarter 2013 operational highlights and priorities for all four of our primary mines. Second quarter 2013 production Kensington gold mine in Alaska was down 8% from the first quarter, and cash operating cost per gold ounce increased 6% due to ore grades.

We expect production from this mine to increase and cash operating cost per ounce to decline in the second half of the year, as we mine expected to higher ore grades. Operating performance at our Rochester silver gold mine in Nevada improved this quarter. The silver and gold production of 30% and 8% respectively over the first quarter.

However this was a slower ramp up than we had expected due to poor crusher performance during the quarter. We expect the capacity expansion underway at Rochester will accelerate production in the second half of 2013. Production improved significantly at our Palmarejo mine in Mexico, the second quarter silver and gold production are 24% and 23% respectively compared to the first quarter of 2013. Silver and gold ore grades from both open pit and from underground operations improved compared to the first quarter and recovery rates are expected to increase by the end of the year.

Our San Bartolomé mine in Bolivia had a solid quarter with small improvements in production and operating cost from the first quarter. The planned mill expansion at San Bartolomé is expected to drive annual production levels up over 6 million ounces of silver in 2014 and for the next several years.

We plan to provide a three-year production forecast for each of these operations later this year. turning now to the operating performance details of each of our mines. Slide 11 shows second quarter 2013 highlights Palmarejo. Although, productions levels at Palmarejo started off slowly this year as a result of lower mining rates, planned ore grades, rebound in the second quarter got us back on track and we remain confident in our 2013 guidance this important asset.

Palmarejo generated metal sales of $86 million in the second quarter. As previously discussed, we sold more ounces and reproduced due to a timing lag in the first quarter. Palmarejo produce 3 million ounces of silver and 28,191 ounces of gold and cash operating cost of $3.25 per silver ounce. Ongoing cost reduction initiatives at Palmarejo have lowered cash operating cost and we expect to make further progress in the second half of the year.

Capital expenditures at Palmarejo were $9.2 million for the quarter. Process recovery enhancements at Palmarejo are expected to boost recovery rates by 5% to 10% by year end. San Bartolomé generated $49 million in sales in the second quarter; cash operating cost per silver ounce were $12.89 compared to $13.27 in the first quarter of 2013.

Capital expenditures in the second quarter were $3.2 million. The low expansion project underway at San Bartolomé is expected to increase processing capacity at the mine of approximately 10% to 15% in 2013. We expect the expansion to be completed under budget and generate less than two-year of payback. This expansion project is on schedule and expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Turning to slide 13, second quarter production at Rochester was 843,845 ounces of silver and 9,404 ounces of gold, increases of 30% and 80% respectively compared to the first quarter. Cash operating cost of $14.75 per silver ounce were 9% higher in the first quarter 2013; metal sales totaled $35 million. We remain very enthusiastic about the 2013 expansion underway at Rochester. We'll invest about $4 million of share to expand crushing capacity from 9 million tons to 14 million tons. Monthly crusher throughput is expected to increase in the second half of 2013, leading to expected higher second half silver and gold production.

In addition, we're expanding the mines heap leach capacity to approximately 67 million tons at an estimated capital cost of about $15 million. This plant expansion is design to accommodate sustained higher production rates driven by mining ore contained in historic stockpiles. These stockpiles were created during the mines 26-year operating history when gold and silver prices were significantly lower than the current market. Capital expenditures at Rochester were $6.6 million in the second quarter.

Kensington produced 23,162 ounces of gold in the second quarter, an 8% decline from the first quarter. This contributed to a 6% increase in cash operating cost of $1,115 per ounce in the second quarter. Metal sales totaled $31 million for the quarter. Average mill head grade of 0.18 ounces per ton was 10% lower than the first quarter due to processing of lower grade stockpile ore. The gold grade is expected to increase during the second half of 2013 as scheduled stopes are mind and processed. Capital expenditures at Kensington were $7.4 million.

I'll now turn the call over to Joe Philip to discuss our development efforts at La Preciosa.

Joe Phillips

Thank you, Frank. In July, we completed a preliminary economic assessment for La Preciosa, which demonstrates the viability of the project at higher silver and gold prices and provides a solid foundation from which we believe we can enhance the projects economic over time. We are starting basic engineering and full feasibility work in the second half of 2013 from exploration, infill and development drilling.

We are also working on key infrastructure sites and have been focused on a sound proactive community relations program in the area. The PEA include an additional mine life of 17 years producing an average of 9.1 million silver ounces and 15,100 gold ounces per year over the first 14 years at an average cash operating cost of $13.86 per silver ounce.

On slide 18, we outlined some of the key areas that focus for the feasibility study for improving the economics of the project. Our goal over the coming year will be to develop opportunities to make La Preciosa a compelling project at current spot prices.

We’ll be focusing exploration efforts in areas we believe will add resources and reserves, reduce strip ratio and improve rigs. Metallurgical studies will evaluate methods to increase the expected recovery rate, optimize reagents, select the best throughput rate and improve overall plant economics.

Slide 19 breaks down the expected timeline for La Preciosa, showing completion of our PEA in the second quarter and the filing of the PEA on the third quarter 2013. We’ll be commencing the feasibility study over the coming year and based upon favorable results, we will only commence and complete mine construction during 2015 to 2016. That will give us an expected initial production in the second half of 2016.

I’d like to reinforce the comments made by Mitch and Frank regarding our capital program. Coeur took initiative in 2013 to execute too high return project to improve the production and reduce cost at Rochester and San Bartolome. These projects are expected to be completed and begin showing benefits by the end of this year.

We are fortunate that our operations are now well positioned to operate efficiently in the coming year with minimal sustaining capital. Kensington, San Bartolome and Rochester should have only modest to sustaining capital requirements next year. And at Palmarejo we are evaluating the opportunity to scale down and defer the silver works for the next tailing cliff further reducing capital.

We believe our investments in capacity enhancements and efficiency improvement over the past two years will enable us to harvest the benefit with lower cost and improve recoveries in coming quarters. Our unique mineral deposits at properties like Palmarejo also offer significant flexibility to adjust our operating plans and respond to lower prices without significant long-term impact to the operations.

With that, I will turn the call over to Don Birak to take us through the second quarter 2013 exploration highlights.

Don Birak

Thanks, Joe. I am pleased to give you this update on our second quarter 2013 exploration program. At the peak of the quarter we had 11 drills (inaudible). Good results were obtained from Palmarejo, Rochester and Kensington this quarter and I will cover those in a next few slides. Looking forward we recently committed to a 17% reduction in our budgeted 2013 exploration and additional $3 million of the budget relocated to our new La Preciosa project.

For your reference we have included our second quarter results in the appendix of this presentation. And our largest program conducted at Palmarejo district exploration focused on three areas, Guadalupe around the current Palmarejo surface in underground mining area targets in the district (inaudible) plan that of Guadalupe and are willing to expand the size of Las Animas surface minable reserves. Good results were obtained from joining at El Salto and we commenced target drilling, target generation rig on La Curra both additional potential to contribute to expansion of our Las Animas.

Shifting to the Palmarejo mine area we show on this plan view the targets we drilled in the quarter and those that we plan to drill in the second half of the year. Today our best results have come from underground joining on the 108 Interclavos zones and from around the Tucson/Chapotillo zones. Many drilled assets are pending. We are encouraged by the results thus far and expect to see positive impacts underground to surface minable resources and reserves.

Finally, we are evaluating opportunities to expand the (Inaudible) surface mine southeast with the upper part of the 76 level and at debt.

Now we move to Rochester and our second large drilling program in the quarter. Expansion here continues to define ore grades within our historic stockpile material built over the long history of this large silver and gold mine in Nevada. Recall we commenced this work last year and estimated that around 150 million short tons of material are contained various stockpile shown on this slide 24. That work resulted in definition of new mineral reserves and resources on nearly a third the estimated total tons. And we continue to drill to define and expand stockpile resources.

In the coming months, we are planning to update our year end 2012 mineral resources and reserves at Rochester to reflect the impact of the recently settled claim system as mentioned by Mitch. Complement the evaluation of low cost stockpile in Rochester. We commenced work to find new areas with potential to add to new mineral resources and reserves. Seven areas are shown on this map and work continues to select neutral cites within them. In addition, we show a cross section looking north to the main Rochester deposit, demonstrating the potential to expand the mine limits.

Now we move further north to Alaska and our Kensington gold mine. Most of our work this past quarter in addition to ongoing definition drilling from underground was devoted to expanding the size of the current Kensington oil resource and reserves. There we showed some of the results of the team, which suggest Kensington operation extends over 200 feets in the South and is open both to depths and up. Joining of this favorable sector of the mine quarter was made possible by a new development heading on the 1170 foot level shown here. At this stage, drilling is still very fairly widely space but results are very encouraging towards achieving our goal (inaudible) of Kensington. Mitch?

Mitchell Krebs

Thanks, Don. As I said at the beginning of the call, we're focused on maximizing our net cash flow and maintaining operational consistency. We feel we have a solid plan in place to address the lower prices we're currently experiencing. Our portfolio of five operations provides us with a range of options and opportunities to adjust to the current environment. We expect to be net cash flow positive during the second half of the year and in 2014, at these current price levels. We are maintaining our production guidance for the full-year and look forward to providing you with three years plans for each of our operations later this year. We do see more upside to silver and gold prices than downside, but we will continue to manage the company in a way that reflects the current reality and protect stockholder value.

Thanks again for joining us on the call today and operator we’re ready for questions. Operator?

Question-and-Answer session

Operator

(Operator Instructions). And your first question comes from Jorge Beristain with Deutsche Bank.

Jorge Beristain - Deutsche Bank

Hey Mitch. Congrats on your results and just two follow-up question one is if you could kind of [demention] the inventory write-downs and whether that was a cash or non-cash impact, just kind of explain the mechanics behind that? That’s my first question.

Mitchell Krebs

Those strategic investments were mark down at June 30th, that’s a non-cash impairment on those holdings.

Jorge Beristain - Deutsche Bank

Sorry I was referring to the inventory adjustment.

Mitchell Krebs

The inventory…

Peter Mitchell

Inventories were reduced in terms of price down, we’ve been very modest adjustments nothing (inaudible)

Jorge Beristain - Deutsche Bank

Well I guess my question is that write-down flowed through EBITDA.

Mitchell Krebs

The write-down on the investments?

Jorge Beristain - Deutsche Bank

On the inventory.

Mitchell Krebs

You mean the 12 million of reductions in inventory in the first half?

Jorge Beristain - Deutsche Bank

You had mentioned $24 million in the second quarter resulted. So I am looking at page 34 of your presentation change in inventory was about a $24 million impact and I am just trying to understand if that was actually a drag on your EBITDA for the quarter, it seems line a one-off.

Mitchell Krebs

That change in the inventory would just have primarily metal sold at the end of the first quarter to the end of the second quarter. So in calculating EBITDA that would all be sort of below or not in that calculation.

Jorge Beristain - Deutsche Bank

May be I will circle back offline on that, but the other question I had was you mentioned modest sustaining capital for 2014 going forward on your mind like Rochester and San Barts that are kind of steady stating. What kind of number would you be looking out for sustaining capital overall for quarterly for 2014?

Mitchell Krebs

We said in our comments there and I think in our release the target of 80 million total next year in 2014 of total CapEx which includes capitalized exploration which would be somewhere in the $10 million to $15 million range, so you kind of take that off the 80 and then split the rest really in half between sustaining and then plant expansion capital.

Operator

Your next question comes from [Matt Vitureosa] with Barclays.

Unidentified Analyst

Yeah, hi guys (Inaudible) in for Matt here. How are you? So with regard to the press release, I know you guys are currently starting that feasibility study and I just want to confirm do you currently expect to spend like $15 million in the back half of ‘13 and another $18 million in 2014 is that about right?

Mitchell Krebs

To get to the middle of 2014 objective of a feasibility study completion, that total expenditure should be around $25 million, I know that we are targeting about $15 million in the first half. So that leaves the other $10 million for the first half of next year and then we'll trying to get to that decision point, the summer of 2014.

Unidentified Analyst

Great. Expense right back half or what?

Mitchell Krebs

That should almost all be expense.

Unidentified Analyst

Okay. And then can you just maybe walk us through the decision process, as it pertain to that go no go you're facing second half of ‘14 I know that, I am making the slide deck here, you mentioned silver prices in mid-20s generate all-in return an excess of cost of capital. Is that sort of where we should you thinking about, as you guys make a decision at that point?

Mitchell Krebs

Yeah. So over the course of the next 12 months, as we work to the feasibility and some of the areas of opportunity that Joe outlined during our prepared remarks, we'll hope to see middle of next summer it's a project that based on the price deck at that point in time can generate or return in excess of what in our hurdle rate which we consider to be in the 10% to 13% range. So it will need to exceed that minimum level on an [OEM] basis.

Unidentified Analyst

In terms of precious metal prices that get you there, silver in the mid-20s, call it roughly 25 boxes. Is sort of what you are thinking is that?

Mitchell Krebs

Well, we have to see what the extent of the optimization work. No pressure, Joe but the more we can squeeze on the project, the lower that price threshold will be next summer and it's our goal to get that down as close to current spot as possible and still achieve those return, minimum return criteria and then how far down that silver price can go and still achieve those returns is really going to be driven by the work that’s just kicking off now.

Unidentified Analyst

Fair enough, and then just a quick one on the settlement of those claims with Rye Patch at Rochester. I think there was some mention of potential expanding production at Rochester. Can you just, sort of give us a sensitive plans and timeline? Is that, I guess when that might take place and how you guys are thinking about that?

Mitchell Krebs

There are sort of three stages to Rochester’s future. The first of which is underway right now that we go into some detail in the press release regarding the additional 67 million tones of capacity. So that’s kind of stage one and that’s going to allow us to achieve this 4 million, 5 million ounce silver production range which is up pretty significantly compared to last year which was 2.8 million ounces of silver, where in the meantime, we’re working on permitting further expansion at Rochester for additional lease pad capacity that would add an additional 100 million tones on top of the expansion that we’re working on right now.

So that would allow us to not only extend the mine life, but with some investment in crushing capacity, we could hopefully lift the production levels up once that permitting process in the construction is complete and that’s probably three years from now and then once that get going then we’ll beginning our work on the third phase which will really be focused on getting after the additional about 300 million tones of materials that we have there at Rochester in the measured and indicated and inferred resource categories.

And that will be a full feasibility and then another permitting cycle, which will then again further extend Rochester and also allow us to step up production, but that’s probably about five years away.

Operator

And your next question comes from Brett Levy with Jefferies.

Brett Levy - Jefferies & Company

You got it to being free cash flow positive in two half ‘13 and also in all of 2014, is that after CapEx?

Mitchell Krebs

Yeah. That would be after walking down the cash flow statement operating cash flow, less CapEx, less royalty payment, the Franco-Nevada would show up in financing section of our cash flow statement.

Brett Levy - Jefferies & Company

Got it. So actually you will be building cash from that sort of 2.49, 5 number that you are at now sort of through the next 18 months?

Mitchell Krebs

Yeah. That’s right that’s what we expect.

Brett Levy - Jefferies & Company

Okay. I mean, is there a possibility that you are comfortable enough sort of with the status quote that you might increase some of your CapEx to kind of keep the [reserve] closer to neutral.

Mitchell Krebs

That’s a good question. We were just talking about that yesterday internally as we go through the budget cycle here in the last half of the year. there will be opportunities presented all of which will have a fairly high bar and a high return threshold associated with them and then those that we think have the potential to generate significant rates of return, we would probably take that step and move ahead with those but setting that bar higher next year is going to cause a lot of projects to not to make the cut but if there are ones that are unique enough then value creating enough to include, yeah, that’s what we should be doing as a company and as a management team is redeploying free cash and the high return opportunities like that.

Brett Levy - Jefferies & Company

And then the last one, sort of, (inaudible) of size in the same question, is there a minimum level of cash or liquidity that you don’t feel comfortable going beyond?

Peter Mitchell

Definitely 5 to 100 million is around the number that we look at it as being a baseline bucket.

Operator

And your next question comes from Philip (inaudible) with Deutsche Bank

Unidentified Analyst

Hi Mitch. I just had a quick one regarding the recoveries at Palmarejo this quarter, it seems like the 81.2 is significantly below historical levels, which usually been a very 10% higher. I know you mentioned that’s the area you expect recoveries to improve, but is there a specific reason for the sudden drop?

Mitchell Krebs

Yeah. I'll ask Frank to handle that.

Frank Hanagarne

Palmarejo in our open pit find in our current mine plan working through the zone that has elevated levels of manganese which has created some recovery loss in the floatation circuit at Palmarejo. We are working to address that now on an ongoing basis. And then we have some issues in the CIL circuit which treats the floatation tail and we've been having some sizable losses that we're also working to remediate through a plan flow sheet modification.

Operator

Your next question comes from John Bridges from JPMorgan.

John Bridges - JPMorgan

Just wondered, you must be very popular down in (inaudible) with the tax you are paying. Just wondered if you could give us a bit of guidance as to what we should we expect and what we should be putting into our models for the next few quarters for that?

Mitchell Krebs

Yeah. Its great making a lot of money, but the tax men is always there knocking on the door and that's the case for us both in Bolivia and Mexico. Peter, do you want to effective tax rates?

Peter Mitchell

The effective tax rate approaching 40% in Bolivia and about 35% in Mexico and as a result the level of profitability in those countries at the level of tax (inaudible).

John Bridges - JPMorgan

And then in the U.S.

Unidentified Company Representative

Basically, we have (inaudible).

John Bridges - JPMorgan

And that number you are quoting doesn’t include the royalties and things like that done in Bolivia?

Don Birak

That’s right. That’s just the income tax rate. Like in Bolivia, the gross revenues royalty of 6% that we paid that is picked up in production cost.

John Bridges - JPMorgan

And then just as a follow up, the old dumps that you are going back into, how robust are those lower silver prices?

Mitchell Krebs

We removed the word dumps from our vocabulary. We call them stockpile but it's the robust nature. Correct me if I am wrong, but I think the economics that we run on those go down to $13 silver range.

Frank Hanagarne

That’s right. We don’t have the (inaudible) cost to just pick it up and move it metallurgy, so it really is low cost and I can’t remember exactly the low end number but I think it is right in that range.

Mitchell Krebs

I'll get you the gold number, John, in an email, sent to you that has the corresponding gold price that I think it might be in the technical report.

Frank Hanagarne

What we used for the reserves?

Mitchell Krebs

What we use in the reserves, 14.25 and 27.50 for the last year and of course that’s going to change going forward but that was on, that was over stockpile material.

Unidentified Speaker

That’s right.

Mitchell Krebs

And John as part of the probably late third quarter, when we come out with and provide some three year look forward fleet of our operations that will include and I think we mentioned this in our July production release for the second quarter or maybe it was on the heels of the settlement press release at Rochester. We are going to restate or come out with an revise reserve number for Rochester that removes that claims dispute constraint from the equation just to give everybody a better handle or some better visibility on what the reserves are now there without that constraint in place. So that should be helpful.

John Bridges - JPMorgan

Yeah. Absolutely that will helpful a lot. Thanks a lot.

Operator

And your next question comes from Chris Lichtenheldt with Dundee Capital Market.

Chris Lichtenheldt - Dundee Capital Market

First on these three year plans that are going to be providing, is there a particular silver prices based on?

Mitchell Krebs

Frank what are we using in those?

Frank Hanagarne

We are using prices currently silver between 19 and 20, we haven’t landed on our final figure yet and 12.50 gold at the moment.

Chris Lichtenheldt - Dundee Capital Market

Okay. That will be great. Secondly in the press release you noted about some exploration going on as started Franco-Nevada’s claim boundary at Palmarejo, just conceptually when considerably can we see some production from that area, if we plan to?

Mitchell Krebs

Don or Frank you want to handle that.

Don Birak

I will take first part and then Frank can jump in. This is La Curra which we acquired from Tara Gold here earlier this year. The extension of the Guadalupe system prior work on that really there were some small productions from historic mines. We really need to kind of reinvest that whole thing and I think from what we see right now we feel that the exploration that had been done subsequent to that really missed the main target so that’s our premise and that’s where we are going to go after. So next year will be an important year for that. We need to obtain premise and things like that, but we are fair ways away to be able to state a reserve and production profile from now on.

Frank Hanagarne

I mean Don just defined pretty much the timeline there. We will be real busy working on that next year and we will see how it models up on the timeline.

Don Birak

Chris it made just a fine point behind that. Las Animas is the southern end of Guadalupe drilling there has been very positive in terms of defining an open pit reserve which extends on to this La Curra piece of ground. We think about Las Animas as an open pit contributor to Palmarejo in the future. Conceptually that would come into play on the yields of when the existing Palmarejo open pit would be begin to decline and hopefully we will have Las Animas there to pick up the slack on the open pit side of the mine plant.

Chris Lichtenheldt - Dundee Capital Market

And then roughly can you remind us how many (inaudible) open that you have?

Don Birak

Right now to go in to fairly 2016 I think but as we go through the budget cycle and get all the recent drill data into model and work on our updated mine plans will be looking at that but I think for now that’s sort of where we have ourselves focused as far as declining contribution from the open pit which is a lot longer now that what in the past. I think we have been saying and what the expectation had been.

Chris Lichtenheldt - Dundee Capital Market

Okay, that's great. And just lastly, in the press release you also pointed out some anecdotal evidence is increasing or improving demand from the industrial side, with respect to total demand, can you just elaborate a bit on that what you are seeing?

Mitch Krebs

Yeah. Especially on the Chinese side, ethylene oxide has been an area where we have seen an uptick in industrial demand, jewelry demand especially in India is another area that although I guess it for technically outside of the industrial box, with those tariffs on gold in India, it seems that silver imports have benefited from that and we're seeing more jewelry consumption in India than we have in the past.

Operator

And your next question comes from Chris Thompson with Raymond James.

Chris Thompson - Raymond James

Good morning guys. Just a quick question, commencing on the industry at the moment, the question relates to dividend. Have you guys talked about it and what sort of I guess performance would you be looking at, gives you the confidence of considering tabling the dividend?

Peter Mitchell

Chris we think about on a regular basis, it’s Peter Mitchell here, but certainly in this environment from a metals pricing perspective as well as the growth profile that company has in front of it in terms of immediate opportunity like La Preciosa and others, where (inaudible) thinking that preservation and accessing high return opportunities. The immediate priority for us, longer certainly (inaudible) return to capital to shareholders is something that we're very interested in doing. Certainly after this point, kind of the intermediate strategy around that has been the stock buyback, considerable benefit capital to up to it and that excluding the most recent quarter.

Operator

And there are no further questions.

Bridget Freas

Okay, thank you everyone for joining us today. We look forward to speaking with you in the fall to discuss the third quarter. Have a good day.

Operator

This concludes today’s conference call. You may now disconnect.

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