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Anglo American declares $1 bln special dividend as 2021 profit quadrupled

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Anglo American PLC
AAL,
+3.89%

on Thursday declared a special dividend of $1.0 billion and reported that its net profit quadrupled in 2021 on the back of higher commodity prices.

Anglo American declared a final dividend of $1.18 a share and a special dividend of $0.50, bringing returns with respect to last year to $6.2 billion-including the share buyback announced in the summer.

The multinational mining company made a net profit of $8.56 billion last year, up from $2.09 billion in 2020, it said.

Underlying earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization rose to $20.63 billion from $9.80 billion, beating the market consensus of $20.54 billion provided by the company and based on 14 analysts’ estimates.

Attributable free cash flow increased to $7.80 billion from $1.21 billion.

“In a year of two distinct halves, we recorded strong demand and prices for many products as economies recouped lost ground, spurred by government stimulus. Copper and [platinum group metals] … and premium quality iron ore for greener steelmaking, supported by an improving market for diamonds, all contributed to a record financial performance,” Chief Executive Mark Cutifani said.

In addition, the company cut its 2022 copper production guidance to 660,000-750,000 metric tons from the previous range of 680,000-760,000 tons. Anglo American said this was driven by reduced workforce availability in Peru due to the spread of the Omicron variant, which hampered progress at its Quellaveco project. Still, the group said that Quellaveco remains on track to achieve first copper production in the middle of 2022.

Write to Jaime Llinares Taboada at jaime.llinares@wsj.com; @JaimeLlinaresT

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