UPDATE 1-Barrick posts loss on hefty impairment charge
Aug 1 (Reuters) - Barrick Gold Corp posted a second-quarter loss on Thursday, hit by a massive $8.7 billion impairment charge resulting from declining metal prices, and cut its dividend by 75 percent.
The world's largest gold producer also lowered its capital spending forecast for the year by about 20 percent and cut its long-term gold production target.
Barrick said it was developing a plan for its higher-cost mines and could revamp mine plans, suspend or close operations, or sell assets to improve cash flows.
The Toronto-based miner, like its peers, is under intense pressure to reduce costs in light of the plunging gold price, which has fallen more than 20 percent so far this year.
Barrick lowered its cost forecast for both copper and gold production in 2013. It now expects its average all-in sustaining cost to be $900 to $975 per gold ounce.
The miner reported a loss of $8.56 billion, or $8.55 per share, compared with a year-earlier profit of $787 million, or 79 cents per share.
Excluding one-time items like the impairment charge, earnings were 66 cents a share, above the analysts' average estimate of 56 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenue fell 1.3 percent to $3.20 billion.
The company said that due to the delay at its Pascua-Lama mine in South America, changes to other mine plans and the likelihood of further asset sales, it was no longer targeting 8 million ounces of gold a year by 2016.
Barrick cut its quarterly dividend to 5 cents a share from 20 cents.