Russian precious metals producer Polymetal slashed its dividend after a sharper-than-expected drop in earnings in 2013 as gold and silver prices slumped and cash costs rose.
As previously announced, the company exceeded its own production targets with output of 1.28m ounces of gold equivalents in 2013, up 21% on 2012.
However, as a result of average realised gold and silver prices falling 19% and 28% over the year, respectively, revenues decreased by 8% to $1,707m.
This, along with an 8% increase in total cash costs to $745 per gold equivalent ounces, led to a 36% drop in adjusted operating profits to $598m last year, below the consensus forecast of $612m. Operating profit margins dropped to just 35% from 50%.
Polymetal recorded an impairment charge of $366m for the year due to falling commodity prices, mainly as a result of the write-off of goodwill and mining assets at Varvara, Khakanja and low-grade ore stockpiles at Omolon.
When including this, along with foreign exchange
losses, the company actually recorded a loss for the year of $198, compared with a profit of $428m previously.
The company's dividend policy to pay out 30% of its underlying net earnings resulted in a final dividend of just $0.08 per share, compared with $0.31 in 2012. This took the full-year dividend to $0.09, compared with the $0.81 total paid out the prior year which included a special dividend.
Polymetal said its liquidity profile "remained comfortable" in 2013: net debt was more or less unchanged at $1,045m by the end of the year, while free cash flow totalled $138m.
Analysts at Investec said that despite good production growth last year, the lower gold price "has prevented it from translating this into higher earnings".
"The 2014 production guidance is for similar levels so it will be relying on an improved metal price to deliver earnings growth."
Quindell, provider of technology-enabled outsourcing, reported a significant jump in annual profits on the back of growth in sales.
Adjusted pre-tax profit came to £133.7m in the year ended December 31st 2013, up from £49.2 in 2012.
Revenue rose to £380.1m from £163m a year earlier as gross sales increased to £398.7m from £170.2m following the integration of earnings enhancing acquisitions.
Adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) advanced to £137.7m from £52.2m while EBTIDA margin was 36%, compared to 32% a year ago.
Group Finance Director Laurence Moorse said: "2013 has been another year of significant progress for Quindell, having completed the majority of our acquisitions in 2012 creating a market leading technology enabled outsourcing platform for the servicing of claims for the UK insurance industry.
"It has been a year for delivery of new customer wins and organic growth with only 11% of revenue coming from acquired businesses in the year."
The group declared a maiden dividend of 0.1 per share and will adopt a progressive dividend policy thereafter.
In the first quarter of 2014, the company expects to deliver more than £50m adjusted EBITDA, an 100% increase on previous year, as trading has exceeded expectations.