The Company discloses "cash costs" because it understands that certain investors use this information to determine the Company's ability to generate earnings and cash flows for use in investing and other activities. The Company believes that conventional measures of performance prepared in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards ("IFRS") do not fully illustrate the ability of its operating mines to generate cash flows. The measures, as determined under IFRS, are not necessarily indicative of operating profit or cash flows from operations. Average cash costs figures are calculated in accordance with a standard developed by The Gold Institute, which was a worldwide association of suppliers of gold and gold products and included leading North American gold producers. The Gold Institute ceased operations in 2002, but the standard remains the generally accepted standard of reporting cash costs of production in North America. Adoption of the standard is voluntary and the cost measures presented herein may not be comparable to other similarly titled measures of other companies. Cash costs include mine site operating costs such as mining, processing, administration, royalties and production taxes, but are exclusive of amortization, reclamation, capital, development and exploration costs. Cash costs are computed both on a co-product, by-product and all-in sustaining basis.
Cash costs per gold equivalent ounce on a by-product basis is calculated by applying zinc and copper net revenue as a credit to the cost of gold production and as such the by-product gold equivalent ounce cash costs are impacted by realized zinc and copper prices. These costs are then divided by gold equivalent ounces produced. Gold equivalent ounces are determined by converting silver production to its gold equivalent using relative gold/silver metal prices at an assumed ratio and adding the converted silver production expressed in gold ounces to the ounces of gold production.
Cash costs on a co-product basis are computed by allocating operating cash costs to metals, mainly gold and copper, based on an estimated or assumed ratio. These costs are then divided by gold equivalent ounces produced and pounds of copper produced to arrive at the average cash costs of production per gold equivalent ounce and per pound of copper, respectively. Production of zinc is not considered a core business of the Company; therefore, the net revenue of zinc is always treated as a credit to the costs of gold production.
All-in sustaining cash costs seeks to represent total sustaining expenditures of producing gold equivalent ounces from current operations, including by-product cash costs, mine sustaining capital expenditures, corporate general and administrative expense excluding stock-based compensation and exploration and evaluation expense. As such, it does not include capital expenditures attributable to projects or mine expansions, exploration and evaluation costs attributable to growth projects, income tax payments, financing costs and dividend payments. Consequently, this measure is not representative of all of the Company's cash expenditures. In addition, our calculation of all-in sustaining cash costs does not include depletion, depreciation and amortization expense as it does not reflect the impact of expenditures incurred in prior periods. This performance measure has no standard meaning and is intended to provide additional information and should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for measures prepared in accordance with GAAP.
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