Global resources giant BHP Billiton is expected to today announce a big increase to its full-year sales and dividend payout in a sign of the company’s recovery.
Full-year sales are estimated nearly 25 per cent per cent to $38.6bn (£30.11bn) for the year ending 30 June, compared to $30.9bn last year, according to a Reuters’ poll of analysts.
Earnings per share for the basic resources miner are expected to rise to $1.35 for the full year, versus a loss of $1.20 per share last year.
This would continue the return to profitability and growth seen in the Anglo-Australian company’s interim results, which showed net profit rose to $3.2bn in the six months to 31 December compared to a loss of $5.7bn during the same period the year before.
The return to profitability is thanks to the firm’s aggressive strategy redesign and a broad recovery in commodities prices over the past year.
As a result, BHP Billion is expected to report a dividend payout to investors of 84 cents a share.
A strong earnings report comes at an important time for the company, as the board of directors prepare their defences against possible action by activist investor firm Elliott Advisors.
It was reported last week that Elliott increased its stake in the mining giant to more than five per cent. The move gives Elliott the right under UK law to call for a general meeting of shareholders, where it can request for a vote on changes to the company.
Elliott has been pushing for changes to be made since April, such as quitting all or part of the company’s petroleum business. BHP Billiton has so far rejected all of Elliott’s proposed ideas.
Sources told City A.M. the activist firm expects BHP Billiton to report results in line with consensus and hopes that the miner's management listens to shareholders concerns.