B2Gold Corp BTG reported first-quarter 2019 adjusted earnings per share of 4 cents, in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate. The top line plunged 33% on a year-over-year basis.
Including one-time items, the company reported earnings per share of 2 cents per share compared with 4 cents per share in the prior-year quarter.
The company recorded revenues of $302 million in the first quarter of 2019, up 56.3% from the year-ago period. The figure beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $300 million.
B2Gold Corp Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
B2Gold Corp price-consensus-eps-surprise-chart | B2Gold Corp Quote
B2Gold’s consolidated gold production was 230,859 ounces in the reported quarter, 6% above the company’s budget. Gold production from the Fekola, Masbate, Otjikoto and El Limon mines came in ahead of their targeted production. On a year-over-year basis, gold production declined 4% in the quarter under review.
The company reported consolidated cash operating costs of $545 per ounce in the first quarter, 5% below the budgeted level. Compared with the prior-year quarter’s cash operating cost of $481 per ounce, the figure exhibited an improvement of 13%. Consolidated all-in sustaining costs (AISC) of $848 per ounce were significantly below budget by 14%. However, the figure rose 13% higher year over year.
B2Gold’s cash and cash equivalents were $141.6 million at the end of the first quarter of 2019 compared with $102.7 million as of Dec 31, 2018. The company recorded operating cash flow of $86.4 million for the first quarter compared with $147 million reported in the prior-year quarter.
For 2019, the Masbate Mine is expected to produce between 200,000 and 210,000 ounces of gold. Further, for the full year, Fekola's gold production is projected to be between 420,000 and 430,000 ounces. The Otjikoto Mine is expected to produce between 165,000 and 175,000 ounces of gold. The Libertad Mine is expected to produce between 95,000 and 100,000 ounces of gold and the El Limon is anticipated to produce between 55,000 and 60,000 ounces of gold.
Moreover, B2Gold expects to continue strong operational and financial performance from existing mines in the current year. It envisions consolidated gold production of between 935,000 and 975,000 ounces for 2019. Cash operating costs are forecast in the range of $520-$560 per ounce and AISC is predicted in the band of $835-$875 per ounce for 2019.
The company also hopes to generate around $400 million of cash from operations in 2019, based on a gold price assumption of $1,300 per ounce. It will focus on growth through the expansion of mines, as well as exploration and development of the existing projects while reducing debt levels.
Share Price Performance
Over the past year, B2Gold has fallen 4.9% compared with the industry’s decline of 7.2%.
Zacks Rank and Other Stocks to Consider
B2Gold currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
Some other top-ranked stocks in the Basic Materials space are Sandstorm Gold Ltd SAND, Arconic Inc. ARNC and Arch Coal Inc. ARCH. While Sandstorm Gold sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Arconic and Arch Coal carry a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Sandstorm Gold has an expected earnings growth rate of 189% for 2019. The company’s shares have gained 12% in the past year.
Arconic has an estimated earnings growth rate of 3.5% for the current year. The company’s shares have appreciated 24% in a year’s time.
Arch Coal has a projected earnings growth rate of 5.49% for 2019. Its shares have rallied 25% over the past time.
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