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New Hope share price climbs on quarterly update and AGM

The New Hope Corporation Limited (ASX: NHC) share price has bounced back this afternoon following the company’s annual general meeting (AGM) and the release of its October quarterly update.

What did New Hope report for the quarter?

It’s been a big day for New Hope shareholders with a quarterly update on top of the company’s AGM.

In the October quarter, New Hope reported saleable coal production up 66% year-on-year (YoY) to 3,328,000 tonnes.

Coal sold also rocketed 62% higher YoY to 3,343,000 tonnes, despite a fall in Queensland Bulk Handling (QBH) export throughput.

New Hope also confirmed it cut 150 personnel across all departments from its Queensland coal operations during the quarter, as a result of the Queensland Government failing to grant the required mining licenses and associated water license for New Hope’s New Acland Coal Mine Stage 3 Project.

What happened at the AGM?

New Hope management focused on the company’s record profit before non-regular items at the AGM.

Net profit after tax before non-regular items totalled $268 million while the company’s full-year dividend soared 21% higher to 17 cents per share.

Management also highlighted New Hope’s increased ownership in the Bengalla coal mine during the 2019 financial year. The company purchased the 40% stake held by Wesfarmers Ltd (ASX: WES) back in August 2018. The larger asset base following the Bengalla acquisition boosted the company’s full-year earnings higher.

The recent Queensland Court of Appeal’s ruling in the company’s favour boosted the New Hope share price higher in early November. New Hope is now waiting on the Queensland Government’s final approvals for its New Acland Coal Mine Stage 3 Project.

However, it wasn’t all good news for New Hope shareholders in FY 2019. The company’s net profit after tax before non-regular items slumped 44% lower while EBITDA was down 20% to $102.47 million. New Hope pointed to a 40% decline in the thermal coal price over the past year as the major factor lowering its earnings.

The New Hope share price has closed trade today up 0.46% to $2.19 per share.

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Motley Fool contributor Kenneth Hall has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Wesfarmers Limited. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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