Shares of Barrick Gold Corp. /zigman2/quotes/201432642/composite GOLD +2.65% /zigman2/quotes/209252292/delayed CA:ABX +3.53% rose 0.8% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the gold miner reported fourth-quarter earnings that beat expectations, set a $1.0 billion stock buyback program and raised its dividend. Net earnings rose to $726 million, or 41 cents a share, from the $685 million, or 39 cents a share, reported a year ago. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share of 35 cents topped the FactSet consensus of 30 cents. Revenue grew 0.9% to $3.31 billion, beating the FactSet consensus of $3.20 billion, while cost of sales rose 5.0% to $1.91 billion. The realized gold price per ounce was $1,793, down from $1,871 last year, while gold production in thousands of ounces slipped to 1,203 from 1,206. Copper production in millions of pounds rose to 126 from 119. Separately, Barrick raised its quarterly dividend was raised to 10 cents a share from 9 cents, but also implemented a performance dividend policy in which an additional dividend will be linked to the net cash on the balance sheet. The new $1.0 billion stock repurchase program represents 2.7% of Barrick's market capitalization of $36.80 billion as of Tuesday's close. The stock has ticked up 0.4% over the past three months through Tuesday while the S&P 500 /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -1.51% has lost 4.9%.