First Quantum Surprises Investors With Early Release of Earnings

(Bloomberg) -- First Quantum Minerals Ltd. surprised the market by accidentally releasing its first-quarter results during the trading day.

The Canadian miner fell as much as 3.4 percent after its first-quarter results were released at 1:44 p.m. during normal trading in Toronto, before recovering some of its losses. First Quantum earnings statements typically come out after market hours. Lisa Doddridge, a spokeswoman for First Quantum, said the early release was an error by the newswire service.

Mixed results didn’t help the shares much. While the Vancouver-based company’s adjusted per-share earnings beat the average analyst estimate, revenue came in lower than expected and copper production fell 5.8 percent from a year earlier.

The output drop was contrary to some expectations: Bloomberg Intelligence industry analyst Eily Ong had said growth in copper production -- aided by the ramp up of its new, massive Cobre Panama mine -- might support the company’s earnings expansion while combating higher cash costs. While per-share first-quarter profit increased a penny to 8 cents, a measure of costs rose 5.5 percent year-over-year to $1.34 a pound of copper.

What Bloomberg Intelligence Says

“Management’s insights on the 1Q call relating to the copper-market outlook and metals-production estimates for 2019, especially on the progress of Cobre Panama’s ramp-up, will be of interest.”
--Eily Ong, metals & mining analyst
Click here to view the research

The company is scheduled to hold a call with investors Tuesday at 9 a.m. New York time.

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.