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Agnico Eagle mines follow Canadian Malartic at dusk.Agnico Eagle

Shares in Yamana Gold Inc. rose Friday after the company announced a 12 per cent increase in its dividend and as gold prices traded near a nine-year high.

The company’s Toronto Stock Exchange stock was up by 69 cents, or 9.03 per cent, at $8.45 by the close of the trading day.

The August gold contract, meanwhile, closed up US$7.50 at $1,897.50 an ounce. Earlier, it had been above US$1,900 an ounce for the first time since 2011.

Yamana reported break-even net earnings on revenue of $303 million for the second quarter, versus net earnings of $14 million or one cent per share a year earlier.

Its adjusted net earnings of $63 million or seven cents per share, compared with $20 million or two cents per share in the second quarter of 2019.

That beat analyst expectations of $26 million or three cents, according to markets data firm Refinitiv.

The company raised its annual dividend for the fourth time in the past year to seven cents per share.

Yamana has interests in five mines including Canadian Malartic (50 per cent interest) in Quebec, the Jacobina Mine in Brazil, the El Penon and Minera Florida mines in Chile, and Cerro Moro in Argentina.

On a conference call, CEO Daniel Racine said Yamana is considering raising its 2020 guidance for 890,000 gold equivalent ounces after beating its second quarter targets in gold production from Jacobina, El Penon, Minera Florida and Canadian Malartic.

“Production is already tracking ahead of guidance, with Q4 expected to be an exceptionally strong quarter on both production and costs,” he said.

Racine said Yamana is evaluating an increase to it current production guidance. It’s also reaffirming its outlook for annual production of one million gold-equivalent ounces in 2021 and 2022.

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