Trading update – in respect of the six month period ended 31 December 2005
6 February 2006
In terms of paragraph 3.4(b) of the Listings Requirements of the JSE Limited (“the JSE”) a listed company is required to publish a trading statement as soon as it is satisfied that a reasonable degree of certainty exists that the financial results for the period to be reported on next will differ by at least 20% from those of the previous corresponding period.
The ARM group results for the six months to December 2005 have been negatively impacted by market conditions in its ferrous metals division.Shareholders are referred to the trading update released by Assmang in this regard, dated 26 January 2006. Sales volumes and metal prices have been negatively affected in particular for manganese ore, ferromanganese and ferrochrome alloys.
The significant increase in platinum group metal (“PGM”) prices during the reporting period has impacted positively on the ARM operating results for its proportionate interest in the Modikwa platinum mine. Following the sale of 50% of Nkomati Nickel Mine (“Nkomati”) to Lion Ore, effective 30 June 2005, results for this reporting period will only reflect 50% of the profits from this operation whereas in the comparative 6 month period the Nkomati profits were accounted for on a 100% basis.
Furthermore, ARM shareholders are reminded of the fact that the interest held in Harmony Gold Mining Company Limited ceased to be equity accounted with effect from 30 November 2004.
In light of the above, ARM announces that it expects headline earnings per share to increase for the 6 months ended 31 December 2005 to between 60 and 68 cents per share ( December 2004 : 9 cents per share ). Basic earnings per share for the same period are expected to be between 110 and 130 cents per share (December 2004: 117 cents per share).
This trading statement has not been reviewed or reported on by ARM’s external auditors. The Company’s results will be released on 20 February 2006.
By order of the board
6 February, 2006
Deutsche Securities (SA) (Proprietary) Limited
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Forward Looking Statements Certain statements in this presentation constitute “forward looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the US Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the US Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
Such forward looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that could cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the company to be materially different from the future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward looking statements. Such risks, uncertainties and other important factors include among others: economic, business and political conditions in South Africa; decreases in the market price of commodities; hazards associated with underground and surface mining; labor disruptions; changes in government regulations, particularly environmental regulations; changes in exchange rates; currency devaluations; inflation and other macroeconomic factors; and the impact of the AIDS crisis in South Africa. These forward looking statements speak only as of the date of publication of these pages.
The company undertakes no obligation to update publicly or release any revisions to these forward looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of publication of these pages or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.