Freeport McMoRan Mines Profits, Tops Street

Freeport-McMoRan's (FCX) second quarter revenue and profit fell sharply from a year ago but still surpassed Wall Street targets by a wide margin.

The Phoenix, Arizona-based mining giant attributed the better-than-expected results to cost cutting and wider profit margins. It also cited its huge Grasberg copper operation in Indonesia, where results were "particularly impressive, reflecting the mining of a high-grade section in the massive Grasberg open pit."

For the second quarter, Freeport posted earnings of $588 million, or $1.38 a share, down from the year-ago period's $947 million, or $2.25 a share. Analysts were looking for 69 cents on a per-share basis.

On the top line, Freeport said its revenue fell 31% to $3.7 billion in the quarter, down from last year's $5.4 billion.

Early in Tuesday's regular session, Freeport shares were trading at $58.19, up more than 2% from the previous close.

In a positive sign, Freeport said it sold 1.1 billion pounds of copper during the quarter, more than the 942 million pounds sold in the same period a year ago.

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