Published on 14/11/2019 3:51:52 PM | Source: Live Mint

Vedanta reports 61% jump in quarterly profit as tax gain foils price fall

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MUMBAI : Vedanta Ltd. reported a 61% jump in quarterly profit as a one-time tax benefit countered lower metal prices and slowing demand.

Net income advanced to ₹2,158 crore ($300 million) in the three months to September from ₹1,343 crore a year earlier, the Anil Agarwal-owned company said in a statement Thursday. That beat the ₹687 crore average analyst estimate. Sales declined 3% to ₹21,740 crore.

Key insights

Prices of most commodities produced by Vedanta such as zinc, aluminum, copper and crude oil were lower during the quarter. The slowest growth in India in six years also weighed on sales and margins of domestic metal makers, including rival Hindalco Industries Ltd., which earlier this week posted a 33% slump in profits.

The company saw a tax gain of ₹1,610 crore compared with an expense of ₹718 crore during the same period a year earlier.

Tax gains lifted quarterly net income by 15% at unit Hindustan Zinc Ltd., which contributed more than half of Vedanta’s profit in the year ended March.

Vedanta’s earnings were boosted by higher volumes at Gamsberg operations, lower costs at its aluminum unit and increased sales of iron ore in Karnataka.

Market Reaction

Shares of Vedanta fell 1.9% in Mumbai. The stock has lost more than a quarter of its value this year.

Analysts have 10 buy recommendations on the company, 11 holds and 1 sells, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

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Net debt reduced by ₹8320 crore during the second quarter and stood at ₹2,008 crore as of Sept. 30.