Dia Met stock jumps
Quarter profit of $4.7 million

Doug Ashbury
Northern News Services

NNSL (July 07/99) - In the wake of first- quarter financial results, Dia Met Minerals stock jumped to a 52-week high.

On July 2, stock hit $23, up 9.5 per cent from the June 28 close of $21. The stock's 52-week low is $14.50.

B.C.-based Dia Met, which owns 29 per cent of the Ekati diamond mine, made $4.7 million, or 15 cents per share, for the three months ended April 30, up from a $428,112 loss, or one cent per share, in the same frame a year earlier.

Tuesday, Dia Met initially reported earnings of $4 million but amended the profit to $4.7 million a day later. The company re-released results with Ekati interest obligations at $5.6 million rather than $6.8 million.

"The Ekati diamond mine is now a reliable supplier of high quality diamonds to the international diamond market," Dia Met said in a release.

"Ekati's production has proved to be very attractive and is being well received by the diamond trade," the company also said.

During Dia Met's first quarter, the average price per carat for Ekati diamonds rose with each sale. From February through April 457,000 carats were sold for $99.3 million ($216/carat or $147US/carat).

Dia Met's share of the sales was $28.1 million. Equity earnings were $15.5 million. There is no comparable revenue from first quarter 1998 as mine operations started in October.

Fiscal year-end January 31, 2000 will be the first complete year of operations at Ekati.

Dia Met's results also show total assets rose $342.5 million from $280.2 million.

The company's income taxes rose to $4.7 million from $131,513.