SÃO PAULO Vale SA posted its first quarterly net loss since the third quarter of 2002 after writing down a series of assets and investments.
The Rio de Janeiro-based miners net loss totaled $2.65 billion in the fourth quarter of 2012, in contrast to net income of $4.67 billion in the year-earlier period, the company said Feb. 27.
Impairment charges on assets, including Vales Onça Puma nickel project in Brazil and its Australian coal operations, reached $4.02 billion.
Meanwhile, the companys impairment charges on investments totaled $1.64 billion. This included a $583-million charge on Essen, Germany-based ThyssenKrupp AGs Cia. Siderúrgica do Atlântico slab plant in Rio de Janeiro state, which is 26.87-percent controlled by Vale, as well as a $975-million write-down on Vales stake in Oslo, Norway-based Norsk Hydro ASA.
Vales earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) fell to $257 million in the fourth quarter from $7.4 billion a year earlier.
Excluding nonrecurring charges, the companys adjusted Ebitda fell 40.6 percent to $4.39 billion.
Vales underlying earnings were at $11.24 billion in 2012, down from $23.23 billion in 2011. Including the accounting effects of nonrecurring items registered in the fourth quarter, the miners net income totaled $5.5 billion last year, down from $22.9 billion in 2011.
A version of this article was first published by AMM sister publication Metal Bulletin.