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Strong zinc demand boosts Noranda profits

Keywords: Tags  Noranda Income Fund, zinc, zinc premiums, earnings report, Eva Carissimi, everdeen mason

NEW YORK — Strong zinc metal sales and higher premiums boosted Noranda Income Fund’s earnings in the second quarter.

"From a seasonally slow first quarter, zinc demand in the second quarter saw orders pick up in response to improved market conditions," president and chief executive officer Eva Carissimi said in an earnings conference call. "Customers are maintaining a cautious outlook for the second half of the year.

Noranda, the majority owner of Canadian Electrolytic Zinc Ltd., posted after-tax earnings of Canadian $10.97 million ($10.67 million) for the three months ended June 30, up 52 percent from C$7.22 million a year earlier, on a 6.5-percent increase in sales to C$162.58 million ($158.13 million).

The Salaberry de Valleyfield, Quebec-based company produced 68,286 tonnes of zinc, up 4.1 percent from 65,621 tonnes in the second quarter of last year, and sold 75,081 tonnes of zinc metal, up 7.8 percent from 69,664 tonnes in the same comparison. Zinc premiums averaged 8.4 cents per pound in the second quarter vs. 7.4 cents a year earlier.

AMM’s delivered zinc premiums ranged from 8 to 10 cents per pound in July compared with 8 to 9 cents in June (, July 5).

"Production in the second half of the year is expected to be lower than the first half as the earlier period benefited from the drawdown in working process inventory," manager Michael Boone said during the conference call. "In addition, the processing facility has a planned maintenance shutdown during the second half of the year, which is expected to reduce production."

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