(Gold inflation article updated with earnings results.)NEW YORK ( TheStreet ) -- Dividends continue to add to the appeal of the gold miners this earnings season as companies rake in the cash despite higher input costs. Heavyweights, from Kinross Gold ( KGC), Agnico-Eagle ( AEM), to Barrick Gold ( ABX), AngloGold Ashanti ( AU) and Newmont Mining ( NEM) have all reported solid results. Despite some production wobbles and inflation worries, the companies turned nice profits as gold prices soared to a 2010 intraday high of $1,432.50 an ounce.
I will be interviewing a dozen CEOs of major gold companies at the BMO Capital Markets Global Metals & Mining Conference next week to see if they expect their flush cash days to continue with inflation on the rise. Here is a quick snapshot of gold miners' earnings and worry spots to watch. Barrick was the clear winner. The company got ahead of the game by declaring its regular quarterly dividend of 12 cents a share on Feb. 16, a day before it reported earnings. Barrick made 95 cents a share in the fourth quarter, up 55% from the same period a year earlier, and blew past estimates of 84 cents a share.