Anglo-Australian miner Rio Tinto’s first-half profit fell four per cent, as coronavirus-driven disruptions spurred a drop in copper shipments and overshadowed the impact of higher iron ore prices.

Underlying earnings for the six months ended June 30 fell to $US4.75 billion ($A6.62 billion), from $4.93 billion a year earlier, but beat analyst estimates of $US4.36 billion.

The world’s largest iron ore miner declared an interim dividend of $US1.55 ($A2.16) per share, up from $US1.51 last year.