Fourth-quarter adjusted net income rose 57% to $947 million, compared to $600 million during the same quarter last year, riding on buoyant gold sales and higher realized prices for both gold and copper.
Rising gold prices and lower cash costs supported Barrick's cash margins -- fourth-quarter cash margins jumped 35% year-over-year to $882 per ounce and net cash margins rose 29% to $1,042 per ounce.Barrick's financial position is strong, including a quarter-end cash balance of $4 billion, low net debt of $2.5 billion and robust operating cash flow generation. Besides, commissioning of the Pueblo Viejo and Pascua-Lama projects would improve gold production to 9 million ounces over the next five years. Of the 28 analysts covering the stock, 24 rated it a buy. The stock gained 36% during the last one-year and is trading at 12 times its estimated 2011 earnings.