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B2Gold's (BTG) Q2 Total Gold Production & Sales Down Y/Y

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B2Gold Corp’s BTG total gold production in second-quarter 2021 came in at 211,612 ounces (including 14,232 ounces of attributable production from Calibre Mining Corp.), 5% above the budget but down 12.4% year over year. The company reported consolidated gold production of 197,380 ounces from its three operating mines during the June-end quarter, 5% above the budget level. This marks a year-over-year decline of 17.6% due to planned higher waste stripping activities at the Fekola and Otjikoto mines.

Consolidated gold revenues during the April-June period came in at $363 million, down from the $442 million reported in the prior-year quarter. Gold revenues declined due to the 22% decrease in gold ounces sold, partly offset by a 5.5% increase in the average realized gold price. In the second quarter, the company sold 200,071 ounces of gold at an average price of $1,814 per ounce compared to the 257,100 ounces sold at an average price of $1,719 per ounce in the year-ago period.

The company witnessed solid performances across its Fekola, Masbate and Otjikoto mine operations during the second quarter, outpacing the respective targeted production for the quarter. Backed by this, B2Gold is on track to meet or exceed the upper end of its total gold production guidance range of 970,000 ounces to 1,030,000 ounces for the current year. Total cash operating costs are projected between $500 per ounce and $540 per ounce. Total All-in sustaining cost (AISC) is anticipated to be $870-$910 per ounce. B2Gold continues to focus on maximizing profitable production from its mines, advancing development and exploration projects, evaluating opportunities and paying considerable dividend.

Planned significant waste stripping campaigns at the Fekola and Otjikoto mines (Phase 5 and Phase 6 of the Fekola Pit, and Phase 3 of the Wolfshag and Otjikoto pits) were mostly completed in the first half of 2021. Thus, consolidated gold production is estimated to increase significantly to 555,000-585,000 ounces during the second half of 2021, when mining at Fekola reaches the higher-grade zones of the Fekola Pit and mining at Otjikoto reaches the higher-grade zone at the base of the Wolfshag Pit.

The company is focused on achieving impressive operational and financial performance from its existing mines, and expanding the Fekola Mine throughput and annual gold production. The Fekola mill now has the potential to run at an annualized throughput rate of 8.3 Mtpa this year.

B2Gold intends to pursue additional internal growth through further exploration, development and expansion of existing projects. B2Gold is planning for heavy exploration this year, with an approximately $66-million budget, including $25-million high-quality targets for the ongoing grassroots exploration programs. The company expects to generate operating cash flow of $630 million for 2021, assuming gold price of $1,800 per ounce.

Price Performance

B2Gold’s shares have lost 30.1% over the past year, compared with the industry’s decline of 17.3%.

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Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider

B2Gold currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Better-ranked stocks in the basic materials space include Commercial Metals Company CMC, Nucor Corporation NUE and Cabot Corporation CBT, each flaunting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Commercial Metals has a projected earnings growth rate of 21.9% for fiscal 2021. The company’s shares have rallied around 51.9% in a year’s time.

Nucor has a projected earnings growth rate of 259.9% for the current year. The company’s shares have soared around 130% over the past year.

Cabot has an expected earnings growth rate of around 126% for the current fiscal year. The company’s shares have surged 60% in the past year.


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