Reuters - US Market News

BHP Billiton slashes dividend, drops payout pledge

Top global miner BHP Billiton (BHP.AX) (BLT.L) slashed its interim dividend by 75 percent on Tuesday, cutting it for the first time since 1988 following a collapse in prices for oil, iron ore, coal and other raw materials.

The world’s biggest diversified miner reported a net loss of $ 5.67 billion for the first half of the 2016 financial year, its first loss in more than 16 year, and cut its interim dividend to 16 cents.

The cut marked an end to BHP’s commitment to its progressive payout policy, which held that it would pay a steady or higher dividend at each half-year result.

Underlying attributable profit plunged to $ 412 million from $ 4.89 billion a year earlier, missing analysts’ forecasts for around $ 585 million, as commodities prices plummeted to multi-year lows.

(Reporting by James Regan and Sonali Paul; Editing by Richard Pullin)

Reuters: Market News

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