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Rio Tinto more than doubles H1 net profit to US$4.4 bil. on cost cuts

SYDNEY--Anglo-Australian mining giant Rio Tinto said Thursday its first-half net profit more than doubled to US$4.4 billion, as it continued a cost-cutting program and wound back its net debt.

The result to June 30, a strong rise from the US$1.72 billion net profit recorded in the first-half of 2013, was supported by record iron ore production and came despite softening commodity prices.

Underlying earnings, the measure preferred by the company, were US$4.23 billion in the corresponding period in 2013.

Rio declared an interim dividend of 96 U.S. cents, a 15 percent increase from 2013, and in line with analysts' expectations.

The miner's shares closed 0.76 percent higher at AU$66.32 ahead of the results.

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