UPDATE 1-MP Materials profit beats expectations on rising rare earths prices
(Adds earnings details, comparison, stock movement)
Aug 5 (Reuters) – U.S. rare earths miner MP Materials Corp posted a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Thursday on rising prices for the minerals used to make high-end electronics and weaponry.
The company, which relies on China to process rare earth oxides from its California mine, reported second-quarter profit of $27.2 million, or 15 cents per share, compared to a net loss of $62.5 million, or 92 cents per share, in the year-ago quarter when it was a private company.
Excluding one-time items, MP earned 17 cents per share. By that measure, analysts expected earnings of 13 cents per share, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.
Sales of rare earth oxides fell about 4% due in part to shipment timings, but that was offset by a 137% price increase.
The company expects to be processing the oxides on site into rare earth metals by 2023, said Chief Executive Jim Litinsky.
Shares rose 2% to $36.89 in after-hours trading.
The company plans to hold a conference call with investors on Thursday afternoon to discuss the quarterly results. (Reporting by Ernest Scheyder Editing by Chris Reese and Sonya Hepinstall)