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Sumitomo Metal swings to profit in fiscal Q1'17


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Sumitomo Metal swings to profit in fiscal Q1'17

Sumitomo Metal Mining Co. Ltd. swung to a profit attributable to shareholders for the first quarter of its fiscal 2017, ended June 30, of ¥22.08 billion, or ¥35.97 per share, from a year-ago loss of ¥6.94 billion, according to an Aug. 8 earnings release.

Net sales for the quarter totaled ¥214.48 billion, jumping 21.1% on a yearly basis, and operating profit in the year surged 171.8% year over year to ¥21.77 billion.

The company did not declare a dividend for the first quarter, but forecast a second-quarter dividend of ¥17 per share, and a year-end dividend of ¥36 per share.

The company noted that it plans to carry out a share consolidation at a 2-to-1 ratio, effective Oct. 1. On a preconsolidation basis, the year-end dividend is estimated at ¥18 per share.

The profit attributable to shareholders in the first half of the year is expected to total ¥37.00 billion, or ¥67.08 per share, net sales are estimated at ¥424.00 billion, and operating profit at ¥43.00 billion.

For the full year, Sumitomo Metal reiterated its forecast for profit attributable to shareholders of ¥63.00 billion, or ¥228.42 per share, net sales of ¥855.00 billion, and operating profit of ¥75.00 billion. EPS on a preconsolidation basis is expected to be ¥114.21.

In a separate same-day announcement, Sumitomo said it will withdraw from a nickel exploration project in the Solomon Islands being implemented by its unit SMM Solomon Ltd.

In March 2016, the Solomon Islands Court of Appeal ruled that neither Sumitomo nor Axiom Mining Ltd. were entitled to the Isabel nickel deposit.

Sumitomo had secured an international tender for prospecting licenses in 2010, but the licenses were canceled in 2011. Later that year, similar rights were awarded to Axiom.

In the latest announcement, the Japanese company said it decided to withdraw due to the slump in nickel prices in the years since the project was initiated.

The company will continue to work towards securing additional nickel resources in the Philippines and Indonesia.