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Barrick Gold Assumes $1,000/oz For 2015, May Book $3B In Impairment

Barrick Gold's Pascua Lama project

Forced to revise its 2016 price assumption to $1,000 an ounce and $1,200 long term after a three-year continuous drop, Barrick Gold Corp., the world’s largest gold producer, said it might book as much as $3 billion in impairment charges, reports Bloomberg.

A preliminary review by the company shows a potential asset impairment charge of between $1 billion and $1.2 billion, mainly for its stalled Pascua-Lama project on the Chile-Argentina border and the Pueblo Viejo mine in the Dominican Republic. Another $1.8 billion is seen as being a potential goodwill impairment charge.

Barrick Gold president Kelvin Dushnisky said the company had decided to use pricing for its impairment testing given the current market conditions and its objective of generating positive returns in any price environment. Barrick had used $1,250 an ounce as its short-term price assumption in 2015 and $1,300 for the long term.

Analysts expect other gold miners to announce impairment charges in the near future.

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