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Asarco Posts Lower First-Quarter Profits

New-York based Asarco Inc., a partner in Silver Valley Resources, which operates two silver mines in North Idaho, reported lower first-quarter profits than last year.

The large metals producer earned $35.7 million, or 84 cents a share, for the first three months of the year, compared with $65.7 million, or $1.56 a share, in the first quarter of 1995.

Lower copper prices hurt Asarco’s operations in Peru and elsewhere, said Richard de J. Osborne, chairman of Asarco’s board. But higher silver prices helped the company’s operations, he said.

The company, along with Coeur d’Alene Mines Corp., announced the reopening of the Coeur and Galena mines in the Silver Valley during the first quarter. Production should begin at the Coeur in June.