The world’s biggest mining companies are about to start revealing how much cash they’re churning out from this year’s commodity boom. Look out for record profits followed by eye-watering dividend payouts.

The top-five western diversified miners may have earned a combined US$85 billion for the first half of the year, according to analyst estimates, more than double the level from a year ago. Rio Tinto Group, the first to report on Wednesday, July 28, is expected to announce US$22 billion of profit for the six months, on a par with its total for all of 2020.

The mining sector has been one of the biggest beneficiaries from the world’s efforts to emerge from the pandemic. The trillions of dollars poured into recovery packages have ignited demand for commodities like steel, iron ore and aluminum, driving prices sharply higher and sending inflation pressures rippling through the global economy.

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