Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Kazakhmys Shines amid Copper Boom

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Kazakhmys Shines amid Copper Boom

Article excerpt

Byline: TOM NICHOLLS

COPPER miner Kazakhmys raced 37p higher to 1303p today after the group said earnings at the half-year stage had already exceeded its full-year earnings in 2005 thanks to buoyant commodity prices.

Beating analysts' forecasts, pre-tax profit rose 174% to $984.5 million ([pounds sterling]524 million) as average realised copper prices soared 88%. The company is paying an interim dividend of 12.8 cents, which it said reflects its " confidence in the business and the continued strength in copper prices".

Chief executive YK Cha also announced he will step down at the end of the year for personal reasons.

Meanwhile, fellow miner Xstrata was down 2p at 2203p, having rallied yesterday on rumours that Brazil's CVRD may be interested in a tie-up with the firm. Antofagasta shed 1/2p to 4471/2p, BHP Billiton fell 1p to 926p and Rio Tinto was 2p lower at 2472p.

The FTSE 100 slipped 4.6 to 5885.6, amid little encouragement from international equity markets. The Dow closed 5.77 points lower yesterday.

And, despite an earlier exporter-led rally, Tokyo's Nikkei index closed up just 7.35 points at 15,874.28, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index ended the morning 7.62 higher at 17,394.83.

Investors in all three markets were trading cautiously ahead of tomorrow's decision on US interest rates.

Oil shares were firmer, despite British oil major BPadmitting its key Thunder Horse oil and gas field in the Gulf of Mexico will not start producing until mid-2008, 18 months later than planned, because of problems with its subsea equipment.

There was bad news too for Shell.

The Russian authorities have cancelled a key environmental permit at one of the Anglo-Dutch major's showcase projects, the $20 billion Sakhalin liquefied natural gas development.

However, the BP news pushed oil futures above $64 a barrel and BP shares added 7p to 586p, while Shell rose 11p to 1804p.

The boom in commercial property is lining the pockets of agents at Colliers CRE as fee income rose 9.1% to [pounds sterling]36.13 million in its first half to end-June. …

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