U.S. Markets open in 1 hr

Barrick Reports 2015 Full Year and Fourth Quarter Results- Growing Free Cash Flow Through Expanding Margins and Superior Portfolio Management

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Feb 17, 2016) - Barrick Gold Corporation (ABX.TO)(ABX.TO)

  • In 2015, Barrick produced 6.12 million ounces of gold, in line with the company's revised outlook for the year. All-in sustaining costs of $831 per ounce1 in 2015 were below our original guidance of $860-$895 per ounce, and at the low end of our revised outlook of $830-$870 per ounce.

  • In 2015, despite lower gold prices, Barrick recorded positive free cash flow for the first time in four years, generating $471 million1,2in free cash flow for the full year, and $387 million in the fourth quarter.

  • Adjusted net earnings were $344 million ($0.30 per share)1for the full year and $91 million ($0.08 per share) in the fourth quarter. A net loss of $2.84 billion ($2.44 per share) for the full year and $2.62 billion ($2.25 per share) in the fourth quarter reflects the impact of $3.1 billion in previously announced after-tax impairment charges.

  • For 2016, production guidance is 5.0-5.5 million ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $775-$825 per ounce, and 370-410 million pounds of copper at all-in sustaining costs of $2.05-$2.35 per pound.1,3

  • Barrick's over-arching objective is to generate, and ideally grow, free cash flow in any foreseeable gold price environment. In support of this, our aspiration is to achieve all-in sustaining costs below $700 per ounce by 2019.

  • In 2015, the company's total debt was reduced by $3.1 billion, or 24 percent; our debt reduction target for 2016 is at least $2 billion.

  • Proven and probable gold reserves were 91.9 million ounces as of December 31, 2015.4 In addition, we have reported an initial inferred resource of 5.5 million ounces at our Alturas discovery in Chile.

  • Barrick Investor Day webcast information and presentations will be available on February 22 at www.barrick.com. Please join us for additional insights into our strategic thinking, including operational plans and priorities, financial analysis, and a project pipeline update.

Barrick Gold Corporation (ABX.TO)(ABX.TO) (Barrick or the "company") today reported adjusted net earnings of $344 million ($0.30 per share) for the full year and $91 million ($0.08 per share) for the fourth quarter. A net loss of $2.84 billion ($2.44 per share) for the full year and $2.62 billion ($2.25 per share) in the fourth quarter reflects the impact of $3.1 billion in after-tax impairment charges. These charges are primarily associated with an adjustment to the company's short- and long-term gold price assumptions, which have been revised downward to ensure a focus on maximizing free cash flow. Full year adjusted EBITDA was $3.19 billion1, with adjusted EBITDA of $722 million in the fourth quarter. The company generated $471 million2 in free cash flow in 2015 and $387 million in the fourth quarter.

Production for the full year was 6.12 million ounces of gold, in line with our revised outlook for the year. All-in sustaining costs in 2015 were $831 per ounce, below our original guidance of $860-$895 per ounce, and at the low end of our revised outlook of $830-$870 per ounce. The company also produced 511 million pounds of copper at all-in sustaining costs of $2.33 per pound in 2015, in line with expectations. In the fourth quarter, the company produced 1.62 million ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $733 per ounce, and 138 million pounds of copper at all-in sustaining costs of $2.15 per pound.

STRATEGIC FRAMEWORK

Our vision is the generation of wealth through responsible mining - wealth for our owners, our people, and the countries and communities with which we partner. We aim to be the leading mining company focused on gold, growing our cash flow per share by developing and operating high-quality assets through disciplined allocation of human and financial capital, and operational excellence.

In 2015, Barrick revitalized the culture that drove the company's initial success. We implemented a lean, decentralized operating model; optimized our portfolio around assets with the greatest prospects for profitability and growth; and strengthened our balance sheet. We are returning to a high performance culture, characterized by disciplined capital allocation, consistent execution, and relentless self-improvement.

This has laid the foundation for us to pursue our single over-arching objective: to generate, and ideally grow, free cash flow in any foreseeable gold price environment. We also seek to maintain a sustainable portfolio capable of generating a 10-15 percent return on invested capital through metal price cycles. We will achieve this through industry-leading margins, and superior portfolio management. This will allow us to restore our balance sheet to withstand gold price volatility, invest to improve the quality of our asset base, and reward our shareholders with a reliable dividend.

Our production will be measured by quality, not quantity. While we are producing fewer ounces today than we have in recent years, we are generating significantly more cash. With the largest reserve and resource base in the industry, we have many options within our existing portfolio to maintain and grow free cash flow beyond 2020. We will also continue to assess alternative investments and opportunities which align with our strategic focus, and meet our hurdle rate of 15 percent.
Our strategy is distinguished by the following principles:

  • We focus on cash margin growth over growth in ounces to deliver free cash flow.
  • We have transparent strategic priorities that govern the way in which our capital is allocated.
  • Our operating behavior is gold price agnostic, which will ultimately lead to superior leverage to a rising gold price, while enabling the company to endure periods of gold price volatility.

OUTLOOK

In 2016, we expect to produce 5.0-5.5 million ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $775-$825 per ounce.

For 2017, we expect to produce 5.0-5.5 million ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $740-$790 per ounce.

In 2018, we expect to produce 4.6-5.1 million ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $725-$775 per ounce.

Our aspiration is to achieve all-in sustaining costs below $700 per ounce by 2019.

Based on our current asset mix and subject to potential divestments, we expect to maintain annual production of at least 4.5 million ounces of gold through 2020.

Please see page 13 for detailed operating and capital expenditure guidance. The table found in the appendix at the end of this press release outlines the material assumptions used to develop the forward-looking statements in our outlook and guidance, and provides an economic sensitivity analysis of those assumptions. For certain related risk factors, please see the cautionary statement on forward-looking information at the end of this press release.

INDUSTRY-LEADING MARGINS THROUGH BEST-IN-CLASS OPERATIONS

Our over-arching objective as a business is to generate, and ideally grow, our free cash flow per share in any foreseeable gold price environment. In support of this objective, we intend to achieve and maintain industry-leading margins by improving the productivity and efficiency of our operations through our Best-in-Class program. We will do so with an unwavering commitment to the safety of people and the environment.

Best-in-Class is a data-driven system that will maximize value creation from our operations by driving improvements in efficiency and productivity, as well as sustainable reductions in costs, across our portfolio. The initiative will bring together in a single system all of our existing and future improvement initiatives - those already identified in our Value Realization studies, as well as those associated with our $2 billion cash flow improvement target.

Best-in-Class provides a detailed road map for closing the gap between current performance and optimal performance at each of our mines. We measure the existing productivity and efficiency of each operation, which we then contrast with benchmarks for comparable assets in the industry. To close the gap, each mine develops a scorecard with concrete targets to reduce and optimize the intensity of labor, mining, energy, and capital. These targets are tied to broader objectives: growth in revenue, improvements in asset efficiency, and increasing operating margins.

Best-in-Class demands that our leaders constantly do better, by eliminating waste, improving execution, and optimizing systems. The program also demands constant technological innovation and system redesign. We strive both to achieve best-in-class performance today, and to redefine what best-in-class will look like tomorrow. Our goal is to constantly challenge and push past the technical limits of our operations, redefining what is possible.

SUPERIOR PORTFOLIO MANAGEMENT THROUGH DISCIPLINED CAPITAL ALLOCATION

The second means by which we will generate, and ideally grow, free cash flow per share in any foreseeable gold price environment, is through superior portfolio management, which will demand continued discipline in how we allocate capital.

In 2015, we overhauled our investment review process, with requirements for more rigorous financial analysis and review procedures, stronger business cases, and enhanced risk assessment. We expect our portfolio to deliver a 10-15 percent return on invested capital through the metal price cycle and, as such, all new capital spending is measured against a hurdle rate of 15 percent based on the company's long-term gold price assumption, currently at $1,200 per ounce.

We have also implemented a consistent methodology for determining the pricing assumptions we use for budgeting and mine planning, calculation of reserves, impairment testing, and project economics. Our short-term gold price will be set at a discount to prevailing spot prices. For 2016, we are using a short-term gold price assumption of $1,000 per ounce. Our long-term gold price assumption has been set at $1,200 per ounce, representing what we believe to be a prudent assessment of long-term consensus pricing. Our long-term pricing assumptions will only be adjusted based on fundamental shifts in the gold market. This approach ensures a focus on maximizing free cash flow in the near-term, while maintaining upside leverage to higher gold prices in the future.

RESTORING A STRONG BALANCE SHEET

Continuing to restore a strong balance sheet remains one of Barrick's top priorities. In 2015, we reduced our total debt by 24 percent, or $3.1 billion, exceeding our original target of $3 billion. As a result, we expect to save roughly $135 million in interest costs on an annualized basis. We also extended the termination date on the majority of our fully undrawn $4 billion credit facility from January 2020 to January 2021, and replaced its key financial covenant with a net debt to total capitalization ratio5 that better reflects our deleveraging efforts.

The company's liquidity position is strong and continues to improve, with robust cash flow generation, and modest near-term debt repayment obligations. At the end of the fourth quarter, Barrick had a consolidated cash balance of approximately $2.5 billion.6 Subsequent to year-end, the company received an additional $610 million in cash from the sale of Bald Mountain and 50 percent of Round Mountain. Barrick has less than $250 million in debt due before 2018, and about $5 billion, or half of our outstanding debt of $10.0 billion, does not mature until after 2032.7

In 2016, we intend to reduce our total debt by at least $2 billion through the following means:

  • Drawing on our cash balance.
  • Delivering free cash flow from operations.
  • Selling additional non-core assets and creating new joint ventures and partnerships.

In the medium term, we aim to reduce our debt to below $5 billion. Philosophically, our goal is to have no debt at all. However, we will continue to pursue debt reduction with discipline, taking only those actions that make sense for the business, on terms we consider favorable to our shareholders.

FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS

Barrick generated $471 million2 in free cash flow in 2015, including $387 million in free cash flow in the fourth quarter. This compares to negative free cash flow of $136 million in 2014, a year in which gold prices were on average $106 per ounce higher than 2015. Three consecutive quarters of positive free cash flow reflect our driving focus on maximizing free cash flow through greater capital discipline, operational efficiencies, and strong cost management. The implementation of our lean, decentralized operating model has also contributed to lower costs, by removing management layers, and increasing the speed of decision-making.

Total capital expenditures of $1.51 billion in 2015 were 31 percent lower than in 2014. We also exceeded our overhead cost-reduction target of $50 million for the year, and expect to reach $100 million in annualized overhead savings in 2016.

Lower capital spending, combined with reductions in corporate overhead, and other operating cost savings, helped us to achieve a $33 reduction in our all-in sustaining costs for the year, from $864 per ounce in 2014 to $831 per ounce in 2015.

Fourth quarter adjusted net earnings were $91 million ($0.08 per share) compared to $174 million ($0.15 per share) in the prior-year period, primarily reflecting lower realized prices, and lower copper sales volumes. A net loss of $2.62 billion ($2.25 per share) for the fourth quarter reflects the impact of $2.6 billion in after-tax impairment charges. Fourth quarter adjusted EBITDA was $722 million, compared to $755 million in the prior-year period.

Full-year 2015 adjusted net earnings were $344 million ($0.30 per share) compared to $793 million ($0.68 per share) in 2014, primarily reflecting lower realized prices, and lower gold sales volumes.

A net loss of $2.84 billion ($2.44 per share) for 2015 reflects the impact of $3.1 billion in after-tax impairment charges for the full year, primarily associated with an adjustment to the company's short- and long-term gold price assumptions.

Adjusted EBITDA was $3.19 billion in 2015, compared to $3.81 billion in the prior year.

Operating cash flow of $2.79 billion for 2015 was higher than $2.30 billion in 2014, reflecting the impact of $610 million in proceeds from the Pueblo Viejo streaming transaction. Excluding these proceeds, operating cash flow was lower than the prior-year period, largely as a result of lower realized prices.

OPERATING HIGHLIGHTS

Barrick's operations continued to deliver a strong performance in 2015. Our mines produced 6.12 million ounces of gold, in line with our revised outlook for the year. All-in sustaining costs were $831 per ounce, significantly below our original guidance range of $860-$895 per ounce. At $596 per ounce, our cash costs also came in below original guidance of $600-$640 per ounce and revised guidance of $600-$625 per ounce. Excluding the impact of fuel and currency hedges in 2014 and 2015, and adjusting for the transfer of certain general and administrative costs to mine sites in 2015, our cash costs declined by approximately $55 per ounce year-over-year.

Full-year copper production of 511 million pounds at all-in sustaining costs of $2.33 per pound and C1 cash costs of $1.73 per pound1 was in line with expectations.


Gold
Fourth Quarter
2015
Full Year
2015
Production (000s of ounces)8 1,619 6,117
All-in sustaining costs ($ per ounce) 733 831
Copper
Production (millions of pounds)8 138 511
All-in sustaining costs ($ per pound) 2.15 2.33
Total Capital Expenditures ($ millions)9 332 1,512

Cortez

Cortez produced 999,000 ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $603 per ounce in 2015, exceeding expectations as a result of improved underground productivity, higher grades from the open pit, and higher recoveries.

Production in 2016 is expected to be 0.900-1.000 million ounces at all-in sustaining costs of $640-$710 per ounce. This includes approximately 250,000 ounces from refractory ore which will be treated at Goldstrike. Higher costs in 2016 reflect higher sustaining capital expenditures related to water management projects, and timing of open pit haul truck maintenance.

Best-in-Class initiatives underway at Cortez include optimizing shift change sequencing, revamping fleet maintenance practices, improving underground capital efficiency, installing advanced process controls, and strengthening geo-metallurgical modeling.

We will provide an update on plans for the expansion of underground mining at Cortez on February 22, as well as the results of a prefeasibility study for the Goldrush project, which is located within the Cortez District.

Goldstrike

Production at Goldstrike was in line with expectations for 2015 at 1.053 million ounces of gold. All-in sustaining costs of $658 per ounce came in below guidance, reflecting improved underground mining costs, optimized haulage, and lower contractor costs. Goldstrike also achieved commercial production from the new thiosulfate leaching (TCM) circuit in the third quarter. Throughput and recoveries from this innovative circuit, which does not use cyanide, continue to improve with ongoing adjustments, in line with expectations for the ramp up of a new technology. The TCM circuit is expected to achieve throughput of approximately 11,000 tonnes per day by the third quarter of 2016, in line with its design capacity.

Production at Goldstrike in 2016 is expected to be 0.975-1.075 million ounces at all-in sustaining costs of $780-$850 per ounce. Higher all-in sustaining costs in 2016 reflect higher sustaining capital expenditures for tailings expansion, water management, and timing of underground equipment replacements.

Best-in-Class initiatives at Goldstrike in 2016 are focused on supply chain cost reductions, optimization of Arturo pit haulage, maintenance improvements, and overall equipment effectiveness of shovels and trucks.

Pueblo Viejo (60 percent)

Barrick's 60 percent share of production from the Pueblo Viejo mine for the year was 572,000 ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $597 per ounce. Production in the fourth quarter was lower than planned following the failure of two oxygen plant motors in November, which impacted autoclave throughput. Full production capacity was restored in late January, with one repaired motor back in operation, supported by portable compressors. The second motor was reinstalled in February.

Barrick's share of production in 2016 is forecast to be 600,000-650,000 ounces at all-in sustaining costs of $570-$620 per ounce. The mine completed accelerated autoclave maintenance activities in December to mitigate the impact of the unscheduled downtime, and is treating higher-grade ore in the first quarter which was not processed in December.

Best-in-Class initiatives for 2016 are focused on improving efficiency and throughput through ore blending optimization, increasing autoclave availability, and optimization of maintenance activities.

Lagunas Norte

Lagunas Norte contributed 560,000 ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $509 per ounce in 2015. All-in sustaining costs were lower than expected, primarily driven by lower sustaining capital spending, fuel and labor cost savings, and a decrease in royalty expenses.

Production in 2016 is expected to be 410,000-450,000 ounces at all-in sustaining costs of $570-$640 per ounce. Lower production and higher costs primarily reflect the transition to sulfide ore with lower recovery rates.

Best-in-Class initiatives in 2016 are focused on strengthening front-line management, increasing labor productivity and capital efficiency, outsourcing opportunities, improved carbon-in-column plant performance, and reducing costs associated with external services and consumables.

On February 22, we will provide an update on plans for the addition of a refractory ore processing circuit at Lagunas Norte, which could significantly extend the life of the mine.

Veladero

The Veladero mine performed in line with expectations in 2015, producing 602,000 ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $946 per ounce. The mine is expected to produce 630,000-690,000 ounces in 2016 at lower all-in sustaining costs of $830-$900 per ounce, driven by higher production and sales volumes, and depreciation of the Argentina Peso. Increased production in 2016 reflects mining of higher grades and improved equipment availability, as well as an improved inventory draw-down relative to 2015, through better operational management of the leach pad.

The mine is also expected to benefit from the government of Argentina's decision to lift restrictions on imports, and from the elimination of a five percent export duty, both announced in late 2015.

Best-in-Class work at Veladero in 2016 is focused on cost reductions related to supply chain and inventory management, maintenance practices, mining productivity, and energy efficiency.

Turquoise Ridge (75 percent)

The Turquoise Ridge mine exceeded production and cost expectations in 2015, contributing 217,000 ounces of gold (75 percent basis) at all-in sustaining costs of $742 per ounce. The mine benefited from increased productivity and throughput, driven by improved equipment availability, and a change in mining method. Production in 2016 is expected to be 200,000-220,000 ounces at all-in sustaining costs of $770-$850 per ounce. All-in sustaining costs in 2016 are expected to be higher than 2015 as a result of higher sustaining capital related to water treatment, and timing of equipment replacement.

Productivity improvements are expected to continue in 2016, following the mine's transition to mechanized top cut mining, and the introduction of more standardized equipment, allowing for greater mining flexibility with higher reliability.

Best-in-Class initiatives for 2016 will focus on operational efficiencies, economic optimization of mine design, and evaluation of potential alternative rock breaking methods.

We will provide an update on plans for the expansion of underground mining at Turquoise Ridge on February 22.

Porgera (47.5 percent)

The Porgera mine contributed 436,000 ounces of gold in 2015 at all-in sustaining costs of $1,018 per ounce, reflecting Barrick's reduced interest of 47.5 percent following the sale of 50 percent of Barrick (Niugini) Ltd. to Zijin Mining Group Ltd. In 2016, Porgera is expected to contribute 230,000-260,000 ounces (Barrick's 47.5 percent share) at all-in sustaining costs of $990-$1,080 per ounce.

Other Mines

Barrick's other mines - consisting of Bald Mountain, Round Mountain, Ruby Hill, Golden Sunlight, Hemlo, Cowal, and KCGM - contributed 1.16 million ounces of gold at average all-in sustaining costs of $931 per ounce in 2015. Barrick divested the Cowal mine in 2015 and completed the sale of Bald Mountain and Round Mountain in January 2016. The sale of these assets has had a negligible net impact on the overall all-in sustaining costs and free cash flow generation of the company. Production from our remaining portfolio of other mines (Golden Sunlight, Hemlo, and KCGM) in 2016 is expected to be 580,000-630,000 ounces of gold at average all-in sustaining costs of $740-$780 per ounce.

Acacia Mining (63.9 percent)

Barrick's 63.9 percent share of production from Acacia in 2015 was 468,000 ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of $1,112 per ounce. In 2016, Acacia is expected to contribute 480,000-500,000 ounces of gold to Barrick at all-in sustaining costs of $950-$980 per ounce.

Pascua-Lama

Expenditures at the Pascua-Lama project in Chile and Argentina are expected to be $80-$100 million in 2016, compared to $188 million in 2015. Lower spending reflects the implementation of a temporary suspension plan approved by Chilean and Argentine regulators in late 2015. Our focus in 2016 will remain on further reducing holding costs at the project in line with the temporary suspension plan, while advancing an optimized project plan. Implementation of the temporary suspension plan could require adjustments resulting from regulatory and legal actions and weather conditions, which could increase costs associated with the plan.

Copper

Copper production in 2015 was 511 million pounds at all-in sustaining cash of $2.33 per pound, and C1 cash costs of $1.73 per pound. Higher copper production and lower costs compared to 2014 reflect productivity improvements at Lumwana and the weaker Zambian kwacha.

Lumwana contributed 287 million pounds of copper at all-in sustaining costs of 2.42 per pound in 2015. The mine is expected to produce 270-290 million pounds of copper in 2016 at all-in sustaining costs of $1.90-$2.20 per pound, based on the current royalty rate of nine percent. As a member of the Zambian Chamber of Mines, we continue to participate in consultations with the Government of Zambia on alternative royalty arrangements that better reflect the current copper price environment.

The Zaldívar mine produced 218 million pounds of copper in 2015 at all-in sustaining costs of $2.11 per pound. Barrick's share of 2016 production is expected to be 100-120 million pounds of copper at all-in sustaining costs of $2.20-$2.40 per pound, reflecting the company's 50 percent interest in Zaldívar following the formation of a joint venture with Antofagasta Plc in early December 2015.

The Jabal Sayid project,a 50/50 joint venture with Saudi Arabian Mining Company (Ma'aden), produced 12 million pounds of copper (100 percent basis) as part of mill commissioning in late 2015, and shipped 5.5 million pounds of concentrate for smelting in late December, ahead of schedule. The mine is expected to ramp up to a production rate of about 100 million pounds per year in the second half of 2017 as additional underground development is completed.

Barrick's total copper production in 2016 is expected to be 370-410 million pounds at all-in sustaining costs of $2.05-$2.35 per pound and C1 cash costs of $1.45-$1.75 per pound.

MINERAL RESOURCE MANAGEMENT

Barrick manages the industry's largest inventory of gold reserves and resources, with a strong track record of adding reserves and resources at our operations through exploration and acquisitions.

The company's five core mines, which are expected to account for approximately 70 percent of our production in 2016, have an average reserve grade of 1.88 grams per tonne, more than double that of our peer group average.10 The majority of our reserves and resources are also situated in regions where we have proven operating experience, a critical mass of infrastructure, technical and exploration expertise, and established partnerships with suppliers, host governments, and communities. Based on these factors, we believe our reserves and resources cotinine to offer an attractive risk-reward proposition with significant opportunities for value creation.

To calculate our 2015 reserves, we have applied a short-term gold price assumption of $1,000 per ounce for the next five years, and a long-term gold price of $1,200 per ounce from 2021 onwards. This approach ensures a focus on maximizing free cash flow in the near-term, without sterilizing future reserves that will be mined at gold prices in line with our long-term price assumption. The price assumptions we have used to calculate reserves are consistent with those we are using for mine planning, impairment testing, and for the assessment of project economics.

As of December 31, 2015, Barrick's proven and probable gold reserves were 91.9 million ounces,4compared to 93.0 million ounces at the end of 2014. Approximately 3.1 million ounces were divested last year, and 6.8 million ounces were depleted through production and processing. We added approximately 5.1 million ounces to reserves through drilling and cost improvements, while 3.7 million ounces were added as a result of the use of a long-term gold price assumption of $1,200 per ounce, compared to a single reserve price of $1,100 applied in 2014.

Significant additions to our 2015 proven and probable gold reserves include 3.5 million ounces at Veladero, 2.5 million ounces at Cortez, and 1.6 million ounces at Lagunas Norte. We also added reserves at KCGM, Porgera, Hemlo, and Pueblo Viejo.

In 2015, measured, indicated, and inferred resources were calculated using a gold price assumption of $1,300 per ounce. This compares to $1,400 per ounce in 2014.

Measured and indicated gold resources were 79.1 million ounces4at the end of 2015, compared to 94.3 million ounces at the end of 2014. Approximately nine million ounces of measured and indicated gold resources were divested in 2015, and 8.8 million ounces have been upgraded to proven and probable gold reserves. We added 8.5 million ounces to measured and indicated resources as a result of drilling and cost reductions, while 5.9 million ounces were removed as a result of a change in the gold price assumption.

Inferred gold resources were 27.4 million ounces4at the end of 2015, compared to 29.3 million ounces at the end of 2014. Approximately 2.8 million ounces were divested in 2015 and 10.4 million ounces were added as a result of drilling and cost reductions, including an initial 5.5 million ounce inferred resource at our Alturas discovery in Chile.

Proven and probable copper reserves were calculated using a short-term copper price of $2.75 per pound and a long-term price of $3.00 per pound. Copper reserves decreased to 11.7 billion pounds4at the end of 2015, from 14.9 billion pounds at the end of 2014, primarily driven by the sale of 50 percent of Zaldívar. Measured and indicated copper resources increased to 9.6 billion pounds,4 compared to 5.9 billion pounds at the end of 2014, primarily driven by a reduction in Zambian royalty rates from 20 percent to nine percent.

EXPLORATION AND PROJECTS

Exploration expertise is a competitive advantage for Barrick. Since 1990, we have found 142 million ounces of gold for an overall discovery cost of $25 per ounce, or roughly half the average finding cost across the industry. This includes two of the largest gold deposits discovered in recent decades - Lagunas Norte in Peru, and Goldrush in Nevada - as well as our new Alturas discovery in Chile.

These results are driven by the Barrick Exploration System (BXS), a proprietary system for identifying, evaluating, and ranking exploration projects that has been developed over two decades. This system significantly increases the chances for success and ensures our exploration dollars are allocated to the projects with the best potential returns at the lowest risk.

Approximately 80 percent of our total exploration budget of $125-$155 million is allocated to the Americas. Our exploration programs strike a balance between high-quality brownfield projects, greenfield exploration, and emerging discoveries that have the potential to become profitable mines.

The current metal price environment also presents new opportunities to gain access to attractive exploration projects through earn-ins, acquisitions, and other partnerships. Evaluating these third-party opportunities will be a focus in 2016.

We continue to add new reserves at existing operations such as Cortez, Lagunas Norte, and Hemlo. And we continue to convert resources to reserves at our operating mines. Looking farther ahead, there is still significant potential to discover new deposits in the Cortez district. We are currently exploring a target known as Fourmile, located about one kilometer north of the Goldrush discovery, and six kilometers away from the existing Cortez Hills operation. This area is geologically similar to the high grade Deep Post and Deep Star deposits in the Goldstrike area. Early drilling has intersected mineralization well above the average grade of the measured and indicated resources at Goldrush.

At Alturas in Chile, we have reported an initial inferred resource of 5.5 million ounces of gold. In 2016, our focus will be on continued infill drilling and step out drilling to expand the resource. In addition, we expect to complete a scoping study in 2016. This deposit is geologically similar to the nearby Veladero mine. However, drilling results to date have yielded oxide mineralization at higher grades than Veladero, and preliminary leach tests appear favorable. We will provide a further update on the Alturas project on February 22.

Our portfolio contains a number of the world's largest undeveloped gold deposits, including Goldrush, Donlin Gold, Cerro Casale, and Pascua-Lama. These projects offer leverage to higher gold prices, with nearly 33 million ounces of gold in proven and probable reserves (Barrick's share), and 37 million ounces in measured and indicated resources (Barrick's share). In the short-term, we will work to optimize the economics of these projects, while spending the minimum required to maintain them as development options within our portfolio.

For example, concurrent with ongoing permitting activities at Donlin Gold, we are working with our partners on a scenario that could significantly reduce the project's upfront capital investment, and in doing so, substantially increase returns. At Cerro Casale, our planners are evaluating a scenario that would reduce initial capital by around 75 percent, while delivering double-digit returns.

We are encouraged by this new and innovative thinking within our organization focused on developing strategies with the potential to materially improve the economics of these projects.

We will provide a detailed update on projects at our upcoming Investor Day. Visit www.barrick.com for webcast information and presentations on February 22.

Detailed operating and capital expenditure guidance is as follows:

2016 GOLD PRODUCTION AND COSTS
Production
(millions of ounces)
AISC11
($ per ounce)
Cash Costs1,11
($ per ounce)
Cortez 0.900-1.000 640-710 480-530
Goldstrike 0.975-1.075 780-850 560-610
Pueblo Viejo (60%) 0.600-0.650 570-620 440-480
Lagunas Norte 0.410-0.450 570-640 380-420
Veladero 0.630-0.690 830-900 550-600
Sub-total 3.500-3.900 690-740 490-540
Porgera (47.5%) 0.230-0.260 990-1,080 700-750
Acacia (63.9%) 0.480-0.500 950-980 670-700
KCGM (50%) 0.350-0.365 670-700 610-630
Hemlo 0.200-0.220 790-870 600-660
Turquoise Ridge (75%) 0.200-0.220 770-850 560-620
Golden Sunlight 0.030-0.045 1,000-1,050 920-990
Total Gold 5.000-5.50012 775-825 550-590
2016 COPPER PRODUCTION AND COSTS
Production
(millions of pounds)
C1 cash costs
($ per pound)
AISC
($ per pound)
Zaldivar (50%) 100-120 1.70-1.90 2.20-2.40
Lumwana 270-290 1.35-1.60 1.90-2.20
Total Copper 370-410 1.45-1.75 2.05-2.35
2016 CAPITAL EXPENDITURES
($ millions)
Mine site sustaining 1,200-1,400
Mine site expansion 100-150
Projects 50-100
Total 1,350-1,650
2017-2018 GOLD PRODUCTION AND AISC
2017 2018
Production (millions of ounces) 5.000-5.500 4.600-5.100
All-in sustaining costs ($ per ounce) 740-790 725-775
2017-2018 CAPITAL EXPENDITURES
2017
($ millions)
2018
($ millions)
Mine site sustaining 1,100-1,300 1,100-1,300
Mine site expansion 350-400 450-500
Projects ~50 ~50
Total 1,500-1,750 1,600-1,850
APPENDIX
2016 Outlook Assumptions and Economic Sensitivity Analysis
2016
Guidance
Assumption
Hypothetical
Change
Impact on
AISC
Impact on
EBITDA
(millions)
Gold revenue, net of royalties $1,000/oz +/- $100/oz n/a $536
Copper revenue, net of royalties $2.00/lb +/- $0.50/lb n/a $178
Gold all-in sustaining costs
Gold royalties & production taxes $1,000/oz $100/oz ($3)/oz $16
WTI crude oil price13,14 $50/bbl $10/bbl ($1)/oz $8
Australian dollar exchange rate13 0.72 : 1 +10% $4/oz ($21)
Australian dollar exchange rate13 0.72 : 1 -10% ($4)/oz $21
Canadian dollar exchange rate 1.40 : 1 +10% ($6)/oz $28
Canadian dollar exchange rate 1.40 : 1 -10% $7/oz ($34)
Copper all-in sustaining costs
WTI crude oil price13,14 $50/bbl $10/bbl ($0.01)/lb $4
Chilean peso exchange rate 715 : 1 +10% ($0.02)/lb $8
Chilean peso exchange rate 715 : 1 -10% $0.03/lb ($9)
2017 Outlook Assumptions and Economic Sensitivity Analysis
2017
Guidance
Assumption
Hypothetical
Change
Impact on
AISC
Impact on
EBITDA
(millions)
Gold revenue, net of royalties $1,100/oz +/- $100/oz n/a $534
Copper revenue, net of royalties $2.25/lb +/- $0.50/lb n/a $190
Gold all-in sustaining costs
Gold royalties & production taxes $1,100/oz $100/oz ($3)/oz $16
WTI crude oil price13,14 $55/bbl $10/bbl ($2)/oz $13
Australian dollar exchange rate13 0.73 : 1 +10% $6/oz ($28)
Australian dollar exchange rate13 0.73 : 1 -10% ($6)/oz $28
Canadian dollar exchange rate 1.35 : 1 +10% ($7)/oz $29
Canadian dollar exchange rate 1.35 : 1 -10% $8/oz ($36)
2018 Outlook Assumptions and Economic Sensitivity Analysis
2018
Guidance
Assumption
Hypothetical
Change
Impact on
AISC
Impact on
EBITDA
(millions)
Gold revenue, net of royalties $1,200/oz +/- $100/oz n/a $472
Copper revenue, net of royalties $2.50/lb +/- $0.50/lb n/a $175
Gold all-in sustaining costs
Gold royalties & production taxes $1,200/oz $100/oz ($3)/oz $15
WTI crude oil price13,14 $60/bbl $10/bbl ($4)/oz $20
Australian dollar exchange rate13 0.74 : 1 +10% $6/oz ($27)
Australian dollar exchange rate13 0.74 : 1 -10% ($6)/oz $27
Canadian dollar exchange rate 1.30 : 1 +10% ($8)/oz $31
Canadian dollar exchange rate 1.30 : 1 -10% $9/oz ($38)
ENDNOTES
1 All-in sustaining costs (AISC) per ounce/pound, free cash flow, adjusted net earnings, adjusted EBITDA, EBITDA, C1 cash costs per pound, and cash costs per ounce, are non-GAAP financial performance measures with no standardized definition under IFRS. For further information and detailed reconciliations, please see pages 70-78 of Barrick's Fourth Quarter and Year-End 2015 Report.
2 Excludes $610 million in proceeds related to the Pueblo Viejo streaming transaction.
3 Outlook and guidance projections included in this press release are "forward-looking statements", which are subject to risks and uncertainties. Please see the cautionary statement on forward-looking information at the end of this press release.
4 Estimated in accordance with National Instrument 43-101 as required by Canadian securities regulatory authorities. For United States reporting purposes, Industry Guide 7 under the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934 (as interpreted by Staff of the SEC), applies different standards in order to classify mineralization as a reserve. Accordingly, for US reporting purposes, approximately 1.70 million ounces of proven and probable gold reserves at Cortez and approximately 2.11 million ounces of proven and probable gold reserves at Lagunas Norte are classified as mineralized material. Complete mineral reserve and mineral resource data for all mines and projects referenced in this news release, including tonnes, grades and ounces, can be found on pages 80-85 of Barrick's Fourth Quarter and Year-End 2015 Report.
5 The net debt to total capitalization ratio is a non-GAAP financial measure calculated by reference to Barrick's consolidated balance sheet.
6 Total includes $621 million held at Acacia and Pueblo Viejo, which may not be readily deployed outside of Acacia and/or Pueblo Viejo
7 Amount excludes capital leases, and includes 60 percent of the Pueblo Viejo financing and 100 percent of the Acacia financing.
8 Barrick's share.
9 Barrick's share on an accrued basis, excluding capitalized interest and the reversal of accruals for contract claims and certain other project costs at Pascua-Lama.
10 Comparison based on the average overall reserve grade for Goldcorp Inc., Kinross Gold Corporation, Newmont Mining Corporation, and Newcrest Mining Limited, as reported in each of the Kinross and Newcrest reserve reports as of December 31, 2015, and as reported in each of the Goldcorp and Newmont reserve reports as of December 31, 2014.
11 Total gold cash costs and all-in sustaining costs per ounce exclude the impact of hedges and/or costs allocated to non-operating sites.
12 Operating unit guidance ranges reflect expectations at each individual operating unit, but do not add up to corporate-wide guidance range total.
13 Due to our hedging activities, which are reflected in these sensitivities, we are partially protected against changes in these factors.
14 Impact on EBITDA only reflects contracts that mature in 2016.
Key Statistics
Barrick Gold Corporation
(in United States dollars)
Three months ended December 31 Twelve months ended December 31
2015 2014 2015 2014
Operating Results
Gold production (thousands of ounces)1 1,619 1,527 6,117 6,249
Gold sold (thousands of ounces)1 1,636 1,572 6,083 6,284
Per ounce data
Average spot gold price $ 1,106 $ 1,201 $ 1,160 $ 1,266
Average realized gold price2 1,105 1,204 1,157 1,265
Cash costs2 547 628 596 598
All-in sustaining costs2 733 925 831 864
All-in costs2 719 1,094 876 986
Cash costs (on a co-product basis)2 566 648 619 618
All-in sustaining costs (on a co-product basis)2 752 945 854 884
All-in costs (on a co-product basis)2 738 1,114 899 1,006
Copper production (millions of pounds)3 138 134 511 436
Copper sold (millions of pounds) 132 139 510 435
Per pound data
Average spot copper price $ 2.22 $ 3.00 $ 2.49 $ 3.11
Average realized copper price2 2.16 2.91 2.37 3.03
C1 cash costs2 1.66 1.78 1.73 1.92
All-in sustaining costs2 2.15 2.40 2.33 2.79
Financial Results (millions)
Revenues $ 2,238 $ 2,510 $ 9,029 $ 10,239
Net loss4 (2,622 ) (2,851 ) (2,838 ) (2,907 )
Adjusted net earnings2 91 174 344 793
Adjusted EBITDA2 722 755 3,187 3,811
Operating cash flow 698 371 2,794 2,296
Free cash flow2, 5 387 (176 ) 1,081 (136 )
Per Share Data (dollars)
Net loss (basic and diluted) (2.25 ) (2.45 ) (2.44 ) (2.50 )
Adjusted net earnings (basic)2 0.08 0.15 0.30 0.68
Weighted average basic and diluted common shares (millions) 1,165 1,165 1,165 1,165
As at As at
December 31, December 31,
2015 2014
Financial Position (millions)
Cash and equivalents $ 2,455 $ 2,699
Working capital (excluding cash) 1,310 1,937
1 Production includes Acacia on a 73.9% basis until February 28, 2014 and a 63.9% basis thereafter and Pueblo Viejo on a 60% basis, both of which reflect our equity share of production. Also includes production from Plutonic up to January 31, 2014, Kanowna up to March 1, 2014, Marigold up to April 4, 2014, Cowal up to July 23, 2015, Porgera on a 95% basis until August 31, 2015 and a 47.5% basis thereafter and Ruby Hill up to December 17, 2015, the effective dates of sale of these assets. Sales include our equity share of gold sales from Acacia and Pueblo Viejo.
2 Realized price, cash costs, all-in sustaining costs, all-in costs, cash costs (on a co-product basis), all-in sustaining costs (on a co-product basis), all-in costs (on a co-product basis), C1 cash costs, adjusted net earnings, adjusted EBITDA and free cash flow are non-GAAP financial performance measures with no standard definition under IFRS. Refer to the Non-GAAP Financial Performance Measures section of the Company's MD&A.
3 Reflects production from Jabal Sayid on a 50% basis and production from Zaldívar on a 100% basis until December 1, 2015 and a 50% basis thereafter, which reflects our equity share of production.
4 Net loss represents net loss attributable to the equity holders of the Company.
5 Includes a $610 million deposit received in third quarter 2015 related to the Pueblo Viejo gold and silver streaming agreement.
Production and Cost Summary
Gold Production (attributable ounces) (000s) All-in sustaining costs8 ($/oz)
Three months ended Twelve months ended Three months ended Twelve months ended
December 31, December 31, December 31, December 31,
2015 2014 2015 2014 2015 2014 2015 2014
Gold
Goldstrike 312 187 1,053 902 $ 581 $ 877 $ 658 $ 854
Cortez 352 185 999 902 406 849 603 706
Pueblo Viejo3 134 177 572 665 496 597 597 588
Lagunas Norte 119 176 560 582 506 522 509 543
Veladero 159 197 602 722 915 894 946 815
Turquoise Ridge 61 39 217 195 735 732 742 628
Porgera4 66 126 436 493 769 977 1,018 996
Kalgoorlie 83 81 320 326 782 1,142 886 1,037
Acacia2 129 116 468 470 1,004 1,088 1,112 1,105
Other Mines - Gold1,5 204 243 890 992 1,017 1,040 970 1,018
Total 1,619 1,527 6,117 6,249 $ 733 $ 925 $ 831 $ 864
Copper Production (attributable pounds) (millions) C1 Cash Costs8 ($/lb)
Three months ended Twelve months ended Three months ended Twelve months ended
December 31, December 31, December 31, December 31,
2015 2014 2015 2014 2015 2014 2015 2014
Lumwana 81 76 287 214 $ 1.49 $ 1.77 $ 1.72 $ 2.08
Zaldívar6 51 58 218 222 1.96 1.80 1.74 1.79
Jabal Sayid7 6 - 6 - - - - -
Total 138 134 511 436 $ 1.66 $ 1.78 $ 1.73 $ 1.92
...
Total Gold Production Costs ($/oz)
Three months ended Twelve months ended
December 31, December 31,
2015 2014 2015 2014
Direct mining costs before impact of hedges at market foreign exchange rates $ 502 $ 616 $ 564 $ 597
Losses (gains) realized on currency hedge and commodity hedge/economic hedge contracts 31 (3 ) 21 (16 )
By-product credits (19 ) (20 ) (23 ) (20 )
Royalties 33 35 34 37
Cash costs8 547 628 596 598
Depreciation 259 211 237 202
Total production costs $ 806 $ 839 $ 833 $ 800
Cash costs8 $ 547 $ 628 $ 596 $ 598
General & administrative costs 26 52 30 48
Rehabilitation - accretion and amortization (operating sites) 14 19