Hochschild says to cut costs as precious metal prices tumble

April 17 Wed Apr 17, 2013 2:58am EDT

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April 17 (Reuters) - Latin American precious metal group Hochschild Mining Plc said it was in the process of implementing a plan to conserve capital, cut costs, and review discretionary expenditure in light of the fall in precious metal prices.

Gold prices have fallen roughly 20 percent since the beginning of this year amid fears of bullion sales by central banks and global growth.

Hochschild said average realisable precious metal prices in the first quarter were $1,599.6 per ounce for gold and $29.6 per ounce for silver. This compares with $1,782.1 per ounce for gold and $36.9 per ounce for silver in the previous year.

Hochschild, which produces silver and gold from mines in Peru and Argentina, said its attributable production was 4.7 million silver equivalent ounces in the first quarter, comprising 3 million ounces of silver and about 28,700 ounces of gold.

The miner added that it was on track to meet its full-year production target of 20 million attributable silver equivalent ounces in 2013.

Shares in the company, which have halved in value so far this year, closed at 247 pence on Tuesday on the London Stock Exchange.

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