DMCI Mining Corp. said Wednesday net income fell 17 percent in the first nine months to P1.17 billion from P1.41 billion a year ago on lower nickel ore shipments and average nickel grade sold.
“We expected a severe profit decline because of the depletion of our Berong mine late last year. Fortunately, the bullish nickel market allowed us to ship even the low-grade inventory of Berong,” said DMCI Mining president Tulsi Das Reyes.
“Strong nickel prices and local currency weakness also moderated the impact of lower shipments on our bottom line,” he said.
DMCI Mining’s net income tumbled by 56 percent from P181 million to P80 million in the third quarter on the combined effects of lower shipment (-50 percent), flattish nickel grade sold (-one percent), higher selling prices (+31 percent) and favorable average foreign exchange rates (+10 percent).
The company said total shipments declined at a slower pace from January to September as the Berong Mine did better than expected in the first half.
Nickel ore shipments fell 25 percent from 1.45 million wet metric tons to 1.09 million WMT.
DMCI Mining posted a 16-percent improvement in the nine-month average selling price for nickel from $43 to $50 despite a 4-percent decrease in average nickel grade sold from 1.38 percent to 1.33 percent.
It said the 10-percent increase in foreign exchange rates from $1:P49 to $1:P53 magnified the impact of the higher selling prices.
Total inventory plummeted by 76 percent from 450,000 WMT to 109,000 WMT as of end-September, of which 81 percent came from Zambales.