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Antofagasta (ANTO.L): a good investment if you live in the UK

UK-listed ANTO.L compared directly to US-listed PCU, 24 month chart

The FT reports today on the 53.6c dividend that big Chilean copper company Antofagasta (ANTO.L) is paying, this despite all the sector slowdown and all the et ceteras. that you know already. ANTO.L also pointed out in its conference call that capex will remain as stated previously, U$1.7Bn for 2009. Production schedules remain on target for FY09 and FY10 (2010 includes a big boost from the new mine due online).

That’s pretty good stuff, and ANTO is enjoying the benefits of sitting on the large cash pile it made in the $3.50/lb to $4/lb copper period just finished. If you live in the UK and are looking for a defensive cyclical there are plenty of worse options out there and that above chart shows that the stock has held up well against PCU, as good a pure copper benchmark as there is.

But due to the swandive in the British Pound (GBP) things aren’t so promising for dollar-based investors in ANTO.L, as this chart that compares the main London quoted stock with the US pinksheet illustrates.

Still, it’s a good performance from ANTO.L in 2008, whichever way you cut it. At today’s PPS of 530p, that dividend declared today offers a 7.3% yield. If you’re feeling contrary and like the GBP against the USD going forward, ANTO.L certainly offers leverage and that investor-friendly dividend will give you a decent amount of downside protection, too. DYODD.

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