Cash and cash equivalents as at March 31, 2011 were $460 million, representing an increase of $130 million since December 31, 2010.
In the three months ended March 31, 2011, production of gold equivalent ounces (GEO) totaled 267,368 compared with 239,838 GEO in 2010, representing a quarter-to-quarter increase of 11%.
In the first quarter, copper production of 38.5 million pounds from Chapada increased by 30% over production of 29.7 million pounds in the first three months of 2010. Additionally, 7.1 million pounds of copper produced from Alumbrera were attributable to the Company in the first three months of 2011, compared to 11.8 million pounds in the same quarter of 2010.
For the quarter, by-product cash costs from operations were $14 per GEO, an 84% decrease from the $86 per GEO in the same period in 2010. By-product cash costs take into account the natural hedge of by-product metal prices for the Company's production cost structure. By-product credits inherently offset mining inflation during periods of high metal prices. The Company believes that by-product cash costs are a better representation of its cost structure. Lower by-product cash costs compared to last year reflect strong cost containment and strong copper prices which mitigated cost pressures due to mining industry inflation and the appreciation of currencies in the countries where the Company's mines are located.Average co-product cash costs for the quarter were $449 per GEO. This compares to co-product cash costs of $423 per GEO for the quarter ended March 31, 2010. The increase in average co-product costs was mainly due to the strengthened exchange rates for the Brazilian Reais and Chilean Pesos. Co-product cash costs per pound of copper were $1.21 for the quarter from Chapada, compared with $1.24 in the first quarter of 2010. Co-product cash costs per pound of copper including the Company's interest in the Alumbrera mine, were $1.31 per pound of copper, compared with $1.14 for the same quarter in 2010.
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