Bumi’s 2010 Profit May Have Gained 50% as Coal Surges

PT Bumi Resources’s profit may have risen about 50 percent last year as the company, Indonesia’s biggest coal producer, sold more coal at higher prices, said Dileep Srivastava, a director.

Bumi, based in Jakarta, posted $190.4 million in net income in 2009, Srivastava said in an e-mailed response to query, without providing last year’s figure. Profit may have risen 38 percent to $262.3 million last year, according to the average estimate of 18 analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

Flooding in Australia, the world’s biggest coal exporter, drove Newcastle prices to the highest this month in more than two years. Power station coal price from Newcastle, an Asian benchmark, rose for a seventh week, climbing to $138.50 a ton on Jan. 14, the highest since September 2008, according to data from Petersfield, England-based IHS McCloskey.

“Weather is something that no one can predict,” Ari Pitoyo, head of research at PT Mandiri Sekuritas, said by telephone from Jakarta. “The coal price has climbed much higher than our target of $105 a ton, that for 2011 even if there’s a downside in volume,” it won’t hurt Bumi’s earnings very much, he said.

The unit of PT Bakrie & Brothers sold a “little over” 60 million metric tons last year at an average $70 a ton compared with 58 million tons at $63 a ton in 2009, Srivastava said.

“Assuming reasonable weather conditions, unlike the second half of 2010, Bumi thinks it should be able to increase sales by 10 percent and price by at least 10 percent as well,” Srivastava said.

Investor Daily Indonesia reported earlier today that Bumi’s revenue may have increased 50 percent last year.

Bumi shares fell 1.6 percent to close at 3,000 rupiah in Jakarta trading. The stock has jumped 73 percent in the past six months, outpacing the 12 percent gain in the benchmark Jakarta Composite index.

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