Rio Tinto H1 Profit Down On Weak Sales; Backs Production View

Anglo-Australian mining giant Rio Tinto Plc (RTNTF,RIO,RIO.L, RTPPF) reported Wednesday that its first-half profit after tax attributable to owners declined 28 percent to $8.91 billion from last year's $12.31 billion.

The decline in profit reflected the movement in commodity prices, the impact of higher energy prices on operations and higher rates of inflation on operating costs and closure liabilities.

Underlying earnings per share were 532.7 US cents, down 29 percent from 751.9 US cents last year.

Underlying EBITDA was $15.6 billion, 26 percent below last year, with an underlying EBITDA margin of 50 percent.

Consolidated sales revenue fell 10 percent to $29.78 billion from prior year's $33.08 billion. The company said it delivered largely flat production.

Further, the company announced an interim dividend of 267 US cents per share, down 52 percent from last year. The dividend will be paid on September 22 to Rio Tinto Limited, Rio Tinto plc and Rio Tinto plc ADR shareholders on the register at the close of business on August 12.

Looking ahead, the company said production guidance is unchanged from its second quarter operations review released on July 15.

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