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Gold miner Gold Fields Ltd. (GFI - Snapshot Report) announced that its employees at the Tarkwa and Damang mines in Ghana resumed work recently after going into illegal strikes on Apr 2, 2013. The illegal strike was resolved following the settlement of the issues between Gold Fields’ management team and the Ghana Mineworkers Union (GMU).

This illegal strike resulted from a number of demands coming from the GMU and its affiliates, the Professional Managerial Staff Union and the Branch Union. These employees threatened Gold Fields to take industrial action if their demands are not fulfilled favorably.

The demands of the Union included certain disputes relating to determination of profit share payments to employees, the unconditional reinstatement of an employee who was dismissed following an internal disciplinary procedure, dissatisfaction with certain management structures, removal of certain members of senior management, concerns about catering delivery models, and allegations of discrimination between expatriate and Ghanaian employees.

Few days ago, Gold Fields, one of the prominent gold mining companies along with Barrick Gold Corporation (ABX - Analyst Report), Goldcorp Inc. (GG - Analyst Report) and IAMGOLD Corp. (IAG - Snapshot Report), announced its production and cost guidance for the first quarter of 2013.

Gold Fields expects attributable Group production for the new Gold Fields, excluding contribution from Sibanye Gold, to be 476,000 equivalent ounces of gold, at total cash costs and notional cash expenditure (NCE) of approximately $830 per ounce and $1,290 per ounce, respectively.

The expected production for the quarter is at par with the production outlook for 2013 of 1,825,000 to 1,900,000 ounces and the cash cost and NCE guidance of $860 per ounce and $1,360 per ounce, respectively.

Gold Fields will include production of Jan and Feb 2013 from Sibanye Gold in its first- quarter 2013 results. Thus, Gold Fields expects production to be roughly 662,000 equivalent ounces of gold at total cash costs of $915 per ounce and NCE of $1,325 per ounce. Gold Fields is scheduled to post its first quarter results on May 10.

Gold Fields currently carries a short-term Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell).

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