NEW YORK (AP) -- Barrick Gold reported a slightly higher first-quarter profit Wednesday as it benefited from a 22 percent jump in gold prices and better copper sales.
For the January-March quarter, the world's biggest gold producer said that net income totaled $1.03 billion, or $1.03 per share, compared with $1 billion, or $1 per share, a year ago.
Revenue increased 18 percent to $3.64 billion.
The results included $93 million in impairment charges related to a write-down of an investment in Highland Gold and $36 million in gains from the sale of assets, foreign exchange gains and unrealized gains on non-hedge derivatives.
Excluding those, the Toronto company said adjusted net earnings were $1.09 billion, or $1.09 per share.
Analysts, on average, estimated earnings of $1.10 per share on revenue of $3.74 billion. Estimates typically exclude one-time items.
Barrick sold 1.78 million ounces of gold at an average price of $1,691per ounce. A year ago, gold sales totaled 1.86 million ounces at an average price of $1,389 per ounce. Net cash costs rose while production fell to 1.88 million ounces from 1.96 million ounces in the first quarter of 2011.
Copper sales increase to 119 million pounds at an average price of $3.78 per pound. That compared with sales of 80 million pounds at an average price of $4.25 per pound a year ago. Cash costs rose and production increased to 117 million pounds from 75 million pounds.
Barrick maintained its 2012 forecast of 7.3 million ounces to 7.8 million ounces of gold and 550 million pounds to 600 million pounds of copper.
Separately, the company authorized a quarterly dividend of 20 cents per share.
Shares of Barrick Gold Corp. fell $1.01, or 2.5 percent, to $39.43 in early trading.