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BHP HY Profit Rises

Anglo-Australian miner BHP Group Plc (BHP.AX,BLT.L,BBL,BHP), formerly known as BHP Billiton, reported that its profit attributable to shareholders for the half year ended 31 December 2019 rose to US$4.87 billion or 96.0 cents per share from US$3.76 billion or 70.8 cents per share in the prior year.

Underlying attributable profit for the period increased to US$5.2 billion from last year's US$3.7 billion reflecting a stable operating performance.

The company said it will pay an interim dividend of 65 US cents per share or US$3.3 billion, which includes an additional amount of 14 US cents per share above the 50% minimum payout policy.

Petroleum production guidance for the 2020 financial year remains unchanged at between 110 and 116 Mmboe, with volumes now expected to be at the bottom of the guidance range as a result of the impact from Tropical Cyclone Damien on North West Shelf operations in early February 2020.

WAIO and Queensland Coal remain on track to achieve production guidance for the 2020 financial year despite wet weather impacts during January and February 2020.

Group copper equivalent production for the full year is expected to be slightly higher than last year, despite a decline in petroleum volumes largely due to natural field decline.

The company said it remains convinced about positive underlying fundamentals of its commodities, despite near term uncertainty due to the coronavirus outbreak, trade policy and geopolitics.

Profit from operations for the half year ended 31 December 2019 grew to US$8.3 billion from the prior year's US$7.3 billion as a result of higher iron ore prices, operational stability and favourable exchange rate movements. It was partially offset by lower volumes, inflation and increased deferred stripping related costs at Escondida.

Revenue for the period was US$22.29 billion up from US$20.74 billion last year.

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