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Vale Profits Fall 36% in 'Very Complex' Q1

04/27/2018 - 11h57

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ANDRES SCHIPANI
FINANCIAL TIMES

Brazil's Vale, the world's largest iron ore producer, posted a 36 drop in net income in a "very complex" first quarter of the year.

Results released on Wednesday show the company reported US$ 1.59bn in net income, down from US$2.49bn a year ago. This was below a Reuters' consensus estimate of US$ 1.92bn.

Versus the previous quarter, though, the company's net income increased by US$ 819m.

"We are pleased that Vale has shown remarkable flexibility and performance during a very complex first quarter," chief executive Fabio Schvartsman said. Following, "seasonally lower volumes", adjusted EBITDA tumbled to US$ 3.97bn below the US$ 4.31 posted a year earlier. 

The Brazilian miner has been struggling with the industry's cyclical downturn, dealing with a compensation plan for the victims of the 2015 disastrous collapse of a dam at Samarco - a mine that Vale jointly owns with Anglo-Australian miner BHP - while working to reduce a hefty debt load. 

The company said net debt had fallen to US$ 14.9bn by end-March from US$ 22.7bn a year earlier, with a goal to shrink the debt load to US$ 10bn "in the short term". 

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