(Compares with estimates, provides forecast, background on gold price)
Feb 12 (Reuters) - Canadian miner Kinross Gold Corp reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday, helped by record output at its third biggest mine, Tasiast, and higher gold prices.
Gold prices rose 18% in 2019, as investors sought safety in safe-havens due to political uncertainty, U.S.-China trade war and concerns on slowing global growth.
The company's average realized gold price rose 21% to $1,485 per ounce from $1,226 an year earlier, while total production rose 5.8% to 645,344 gold equivalent ounces (Au eq. oz.).
The miner forecast production of about 2.4 million Au eq. oz. for 2020, a decrease compared with its 2019 production of 2.5 million Au eq. oz., due to care and maintenance at its Maricunga mine in Chile and expected lower output at its largest mine Paracatu, which posted record production in 2019.
Kinross posted net earnings of $521.5 million, or 41 cents per share, in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, due to higher margins and non-cash impairment reversals of $361.8 million. The company posted a loss of $27.7 million, or 2 cents per share, a year earlier.
Excluding items, the company earned 13 cents per share, beating analysts' average estimate of 10 cents, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.
Total revenue jumped 26.7% to $996.2 million.
U.S.-listed shares of the miner were up 2.4% at $5.12 after the bell. (Reporting by Nishara Karuvalli Pathikkal in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)