The move allows ABX to conserve capital and reduce its capital spending guidance for 2014 by $1B, but it also throws the future of the $8.5B project into question.
The news overshadows otherwise better than expected earnings, gold production of 1.85M oz. at all-in cash costs of $916/oz. - in line with the prior quarter and among the lowest costs in the industry - and a promise of another $500M in annual savings by developing a “flatter operating model.”
Gold production for the full year is seen near the low end of its prior guidance of 7M-7.4M oz., but copper production guidance is raised to 520M-550M lbs. from 500M-540M due to improvements at its Lumwana mine in Zambia.
Shares -1.8% premarket.