Miner Barrick's first-quarter output hurt by Nevada gold mines

A small toy figure and gold imitation are seen in front of the Barrick logo in this illustration taken November 19, 2021. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

April 14 (Reuters) - Miner Barrick Gold (ABX.TO), said on Thursday first-quarter production fell 17.7% from the previous three months, hurt by lower output at its Carlin and Cortez mines in Nevada.

Barrick said gold output was lower at its Carlin and Cortez mines due to depletion of stockpiled higher grade underground ore after the mechanical mill failure at a roaster facility, which processes the gold ore, in the second quarter last year.

The Carlin and Cortez mines are part of Nevada Gold Mines, a joint venture between Barrick and Newmont Corp (NEM.N).

The company, which is scheduled to release its first-quarter results on May 4, said the average market price for gold in the quarter was $1,877 per ounce, up from $1,795 per ounce in the prior quarter.

Barrick said it expects the company's all-in sustaining costs (AISC) for gold, a key industry metric, to be 19% to 21% higher from the fourth quarter, while AISC for copper is expected to be 1% to 3% lower.

Miners have been hit hard by a pandemic-led rise in expenses as they implement prevention measures to ensure the safety of workers and surrounding communities, with supply-chain issues due to global restrictions on movement adding to their woes.

Barrick said its gold production in 2022 is expected to increase through the year, while copper production is expected to be higher in the second half.

The company's copper production during the quarter was 101 million pounds, down 19.84% from the previous quarter, hurt by lower output at its Lumwana mine, while total preliminary gold production was down 17.7% at 990 million ounces.

Analysts on an average expected gold production of 1.025 million ounces, according to Refinitiv IBES.

U.S.-listed shares of the company, which have gained nearly 34% so far this year, were down 0.9% in premarket trading.

Reporting by Rithika Krishna in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri

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