Melbourne/London — Rio Tinto Group’s best profit in three years and a record dividend is yet another sign that miners are reaping the benefits of a surge in commodity prices. Yet the sheer size of Rio’s cash flow is starting to raise another question: how else will the world’s second-biggest mining company invest all its money? The company has so far focused on rewarding shareholders and on Wednesday, it promised a full-year dividend of $5.2bn and an additional $1bn stock buyback. However, there are some hints that Rio could use its fortress of a balance sheet to start investing in other mining assets. CEO Jean-Sébastien Jacques said the company is watching for deal opportunities and screening for new commodities with a new ventures unit.

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