The Iluka Resources Limited (ASX: ILU) share price has leapt firmly into the green on Thursday. At the time of writing, Iluka shares are exchanging hands at $9.28, 6.67% higher than at yesterday’s close.
Today’s gains come after the company released its results for the second quarter.
Let’s take a look at how Iluka has been performing.
Investors are driving the Iluka share price higher on Thursday after the company reported revenue from mineral sands of $391 million, a 75% year-on-year gain.
It also recorded a combined output of 175,300 tonnes for zircon/rutile/synthetic rutile, signifying a 30% increase from the same time last year.
Specifically, zircon production was 71% up on the year at 71,800 tonnes.
Iluka’s zircon sales reflected “a return to pre-pandemic production levels amongst Chinese tile manufacturers”.
A rise in zircon prices by US$70 per tonne over the quarter also helped to boost the company’s zircon revenue.
A “further US$125 per tonne increase [in zircon prices was] effective 1 July”, according to the company.
In addition, rutile production grew 25% year on year to 43,600 tonnes. Synthetic rutile production also expanded by ~3% to just under 60,000 tonnes.
The company benefitted from high demand for synthetic rutile this quarter.
This was driven by “increased concern around the future supply of high-grade feedstocks”, coupled with the settlement of a contractual dispute with American chemicals company Chemours.
Iluka and Chemours settled their contractual dispute in confidence but the outcome sees the latter “taking all of the synthetic rutile not taken in 2020”.
An update on its Sierra Leone operations was also provided in the release, in which Iluka stated:
In May, Iluka provided the Government of Sierra Leone six months’ notice of its intention to temporarily suspend operations at Sierra Rutile, effective 19 November 2021. The company is currently exploring ways to reset the cost base of these operations and attract new investors to pursue the Sembehun development.
Investors can expect Iluka’s 2021 half-year results to be released on 25 August.
Iluka Resources share price snapshot
The Iluka Resources share price has posted a year-to-date return of around 44%, extending the previous 12 months’ returns of approximately 92%.
These returns have significantly outperformed those of the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO), which has gained around 21% over the past 12 months.
Iluka has a market capitalisation of around $3.95 billion at the time of writing.