South African minerals and metals producer Assore reported a 1.9% fall in annual profit on Thursday as a strong rand currency offset favourable commodity prices and higher sales.
Assore, which also produces manganese and chrome ore, said headline earnings per share (Heps) for the year to June 30 fell to 4 953 cents from 5 049 cents.
Headline EPS, which strips out certain one-off items, is the most widely watched profit measure in South Africa.
A stronger rand curtailed higher commodity prices and sales.
Iron ore and chrome sales grew for a fourth consecutive year by 5% and 16%, respectively.
“The average market price for iron ore was stable over the full year 2018 …These factors were, however, not sufficient to counter the effect of the stronger rand-US dollar exchange rate,” the company said.
Assmang, a joint venture with African Rainbow Mineral, increased its contribution to overall earnings by 8% to R7.1 billion.
The company said that while it was not negatively impacted by US trade tariffs further escalation could impact economic growth and steel demand.
Assore announced a dividend of R12 per share and a total full year dividend of R22 per share.