More silver, gold at higher prices equates to more cash for Hecla
Last updated 7/17/2016 at Noon
Hecla Mining Company July 11 said it produced 4.24 million ounces of silver and 62,965 oz. of gold during the second quarter of 2016, both significant increases compared with output during the same period last year.
"Our strategy of accelerating growth has silver and gold production up 71 percent and 41 percent (respectively) over last year just as prices are starting to rise," said Hecla President and CEO Phillips Baker, Jr.
"With increased production and higher prices we are generating free cash flow and have more cash than when we started the year." The company now expects to produce 15.75 million oz. of silver and 233,000 oz. of gold in 2016.
At 2.12 million oz., the Greens Creek Mine in Southeast Alaska contributed half of Hecla's silver production during the three months that ended June 30.
The company said both higher grades and production contributed to a 14.1 percent increase in silver output at Greens Creek from the same period of 2015.
The mine's gold production, however, was down 16.2 percent to 11,528 oz. Greens Creek is now expected to produce roughly 8.3 million oz. of silver and 53,000 oz. of gold in 2016.
Hecla's other mines also reported higher output in the second quarter: Lucky Friday Mine in Idaho, 857,542 oz. of silver; Casa Berardi Mine in Quebec, 41,954 oz. of gold; and San Sebastian Mine in Mexico, 1.26 million oz. of silver and 9,483 oz. of gold.
This mine was not yet in production a year ago.
Hecla ended the second quarter with US$157 million in cash, cash-equivalents and short term investments, up 23 percent since March 31.