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Argonaut Gold 2012 gold production beats guidance, shares rise

Argonaut Gold 2012 gold production beats guidance, shares rise


Canadian gold miner Argonaut Gold's (TSE:AR) shares rose nearly four per cent Thursday, after it announced that it exceeded its 2012 guidance with gold production of 108,081 ounces.

The company had guided for gold production in the range of 97,000 ounces.

Shares were up 3.94 per cent as at about 3:15 p.m. EDT, trading at $10.02.

"2012 has been a year of significant accomplishments for Argonaut Gold's employees,” said president and CEO Pete Dougherty.

Dougherty added that the company’s El Castillo production rate has shown “continual improvement” sequentially, while La Colorada has “exceeded initial expectations”.

“The company has delivered on operational production expectations and added an important project, Magino, for future growth and development,” he added.

Argonaut added the Magino project to its portfolio after acquiring Prodigy Gold late in 2012. The past producing underground gold mine contains an indicated resource of 6.25 million ounces of gold and an inferred resource of 355,190 ounces of gold.

“There is still more work to be done to elevate the company to the status of a mid-tier producer and I am grateful for what has been accomplished so far,” concluded Dougherty. 

The company said it achieved record gold production of 32,000 ounces during the fourth quarter. This included 25,805 ounces at its wholly-owned El Castillo mine in Durango, Mexico and 6,195 ounces at its wholly-owned La Colorada Mine in Sonora, Mexico. 

Argonaut reported sales of 29,500 ounces of gold and 70,910 ounces of silver.

At the El Castillo operation, fourth quarter 39,329 gold ounces loaded on the pad, up 30 per cent from the year ago quarter.

Argonaut ended the year with a cash balance of $191 million.

The company will release its fourth quarter and year-end financial results on March 26 before market open.


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