Archive | Vale

Iron Ore Takes a Battering as Bear Market Engulfs China Futures – by Ranjeetha Pakiam (Bloomberg News – March 22, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

Iron ore is getting battered. After rounds of warnings that this year’s rally may be overdone, the raw material is in retreat as doubts gather about the strength of demand in China as steel sells off and record port stockpiles put a spotlight on rising supplies.

In China, futures on the Dalian Commodity Exchange sank into a bear market as steel in Shanghai posted the longest run of declines this year, while the SGX AsiaClear contract in Singapore fell for a fourth day. Benchmark spot prices from Metal Bulletin Ltd. extended a loss below $90 a dry metric ton to the lowest since Feb. 9.

“Steel demand in China is clearly robust, but iron ore prices remain very elevated versus fundamentals, and it’s only a matter of time before they normalize to below $60,” Ian Roper, an analyst at Macquarie Group Ltd., said in an email. “We’ve had a negative view on prices for a while but they’ve held up longer than we expected.” Continue Reading →

Brazil dam disaster lawsuit against BHP Billiton, Vale, suspended – by Paul Kiernan(The Australian – March 17, 2018)

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/

A Brazilian judge has suspended a nearly $US50 billion ($A65bn) lawsuit against the mining firms responsible for the 2015 Samarco tailings dam disaster, as negotiations between the companies and authorities moved forward.

The decision came as part of a ruling in which federal judge Mário de Paula Franco Júnior approved a road map toward a final agreement between prosecutors and mining companies BHP Billiton (BHP), Vale, and their joint-venture Samarco Mineração.

Brazil’s government, which brought the lawsuit, was not immediately available for comment but in the past has indicated its main concern was reaching a settlement and safely restarting the mine. Continue Reading →

Top Iron Miners’ Cash Juggernaut Set to Survive Price Crash – by David Stringer (Bloomberg News – March 13, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

The world’s biggest iron ore miners will be able to withstand the expected plunge in prices because their race to cut production costs has dramatically lowered the industry’s margin pressure point, allowing them to keep fueling a cash juggernaut that’s revived the mining sector.

More than 90 percent of producers in the global seaborne market can generate profits at a benchmark price of $60 a metric ton, Adrian Doyle, a Sydney-based senior consultant at researcher CRU Group, said by phone. That compares with about 65 percent of suppliers able to avoid losses at the same price point three years ago, he said.

“There have been fantastic cost reductions in a lot of instances,” while producers have also been boosted by lower oil prices, Doyle said. “If we were thinking of a pressure point where we’d start to see a bit of stretching in the industry, previously it would’ve been around $60 a ton, now it’s closer to $50 a ton-to-$45 a ton to stress test everyone but the majors.” Continue Reading →

Letter outlines reasons for Stobie’s closure – by Harold Carmichael (Sudbury Star – March 11, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

This is a copy of the letter sent by Vale’s Stuart Harshaw to Stobie Mine employees, which The Sudbury Star has obtained, about the mine’s closure.

“Hello everyone: I am writing to inform you that after more than 120 years and more ore produced than any other mine in the history of Sudbury, operations at Stobie Mine will be suspended later this year with the mine placed on care and maintenance.

As you know, our Base Metals business has been challenged for many years now due to the prolonged downturn in metals prices and ongoing challenges in the market. This has driven us to look closely at every aspect of our business globally to try to remain cash flow positive. Continue Reading →

End of the line for Sudbury’s Stobie Mine – by Harold Carmichael (Sudbury Star – March 11, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Harshaw also said Vale still believe in its Sudbury operations.”Vale is
committed to our future in Sudbury,” he said. “Over the past decade, we
have invested $4.7 billion to modernize and upgrade our operations.

Vale plans to shut down its long-running Stobie Mine by the end of the year, affecting some 230 employees. “This is a necessary decision but a sad one,” Stuart Harshaw, Vice-President of Ontario Operations, Vale Canada Limited said on Friday. “Stobie has a rich history and has been integral to our success for more than a century.

“However, after more than 100 years of operation, the mine is approaching the end of its natural life. The low grades at Stobie are no longer economical to mine in today’s challenging price environment.”

Harshaw also said Vale still believe in its Sudbury operations. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: Vale suspends operations at venerable Stobie Mine

SUDBURY, March 10, 2017 – Vale announced today that after more than 120 years and more ore produced than any other mine in the history of Sudbury, Stobie Mine will be placed on care and maintenance later this year.

“This is a necessary decision but a sad one,” said Stuart Harshaw, Vice-President, Ontario Operations. “Stobie has a rich history and has been integral to our success for more than a century. However, after more than 100 years of operation, the mine is approaching the end of its natural life. The low grades at Stobie are no longer economical to mine in today’s challenging price environment.”

Stobie began as an open pit operation in 1890. Underground operations started in 1914. With more than 375,000,000 tonnes produced over the years, more ore has been mined out of the Frood-Stobie complex than any other mine in the Sudbury Basin. The suspension of operations at Stobie will result in a reduction of approximately 4-6 kilotonnes of nickel and 5-8 kilotonnes of copper production annually. Continue Reading →

Sudbury mine engineer writes kid’s mining book – by Laura Stradiotto (Sudbury Star – March 9, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

A Sudbury mining engineer has penned a children’s book as a way to promote diversity in the workplace and encourage more women to enter the industry.

Theresa Nyabeze works as a front line supervisor at Vale and is president of Women In Science and Engineering (WISE) Sudbury. She is also part of a small demographic who make up the mining workforce. According to a 2014 study by Global Mining Standards and Guidelines, women account for only five to 10 per cent of the international mining workforce and only seven per cent serve on board positions.

In response to this trend, Nyabeze started her own business, Diversity STEM, with a mandate to create products and avenues to promote careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The first project launched under her business is the illustrated children’s book, Underground! My Mining Adventure. Continue Reading →

UPDATE 5-Vale intensifies CEO search as Ferreira to quit -sources – by Guillermo Parra-Bernal and Tatiana Bautzer (Reuters India – February 25, 2017)

http://in.reuters.com/

Feb 24 Vale SA has stepped up the search for a new chief executive officer as Murilo Ferreira announced his departure, signaling efforts by some top shareholders to shield the world’s No. 1 iron producer from political interference, three people with direct knowledge of the situation said on Friday.

Earlier in the day, Rio de Janeiro-based Vale said Ferreira will step down as CEO when his term expires on May 26. In a securities filing, Vale did not name a potential replacement for Ferreira or provide details as to how a transition will occur.

Some of Vale’s controlling shareholders lean towards picking one of Ferreira’s lieutenants to spearhead Vale’s transition into a company with dispersed share ownership, the people said. External candidates with previous experience at Vale are also under consideration, the people added. Continue Reading →

Vale, Glencore back in the black – by Staff (Sudbury Star – February 24, 2017)

http://www.thesudburystar.com/

Two of Sudbury’s most important employers reported healthy profits on Thursday. Brazilian miner Vale SA said it made a net profit of US $3.98 billion in 2016, while Glencore made US $1.99 billion. The results are a dramatic turnaround for both companies, which have struggled with low commodity prices and high debt in recent years.

Vale reported on Thursday net profit of $525 million for the fourth quarter, falling short of analyst expectations but reversing a heavy loss in the period a year earlier thanks to record output and higher iron ore prices.

A Reuters poll of analysts had forecast net profit of $1.8 billion in the quarter, but the world’s largest producer of iron ore fell short on account of impairments totaling $2.9 billion, principally on fertilizer and nickel assets. In the same period of 2015, Vale reported a net loss of $8.6 billion. Continue Reading →

Vale CEO Ousted as Brazil Seeks New Blood Before Reorganization – by Sabrina Valle and Peter Millard (Bloomberg News – February 24, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

Brazil is moving to cast off the last shackles of government influence at iron-ore giant Vale SA — but not before replacing the CEO with someone more politically palatable.

Murilo Ferreira’s six-year contract won’t be renewed when it expires in May, the Rio de Janeiro-based company said in a statement Friday. The announcement came days after Vale unveiled a plan to scrap its controlling shareholder pact amid criticism the miner was run like a quasi state company.

While the company didn’t say who decided Ferreira’s fate, analysts including Upside Investor’s Pedro Galdi say politics were involved. He took the CEO job in 2011 as part of a management shakeup driven by then-president Dilma Rousseff. The current government of Michel Temer has sought to distance itself from authorities and executives with perceived allegiances to Rousseff, who was impeached last year. Continue Reading →

Vale Dusts Off Crystal Ball, Sees $70-$75 ‘Floor’ for Iron Ore – by Paul Kiernan (4-traders.com/Wall Street Journal – February 23, 2017)

http://www.4-traders.com/

RIO DE JANEIRO — Brazilian mining company Vale SA is back to forecasting iron-ore prices after a four-month rally in the market injected executives with a level of optimism not seen in years.

Vale’s iron-ore director dusted off his so-called crystal ball Thursday to predict that prices for the commodity will have a “floor” of $70 to $75 and could average above $80 for the year.

“In summary, 2017 is going to be a very strong year,” the executive, Peter Poppinga, said in a conference call. “Steel demand is greater than in 2016. New supply that’s going to come is less than in 2016, and stocks are unbalanced. Therefore, prices will be significantly higher than in 2016.” Continue Reading →

Vale to scrap controlling bloc, merge shares in major governance move – by Guillermo Parra-Bernal and Marta Nogueira (Globe and Mail/Reuters – February 20, 2017)

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

Vale SA plans to become a company with no defined controlling shareholder as soon as possible, in a landmark step aimed at enhancing transparency and equal rights for all shareholders in the world’s largest iron ore producer.

Controlling shareholders grouped under holding company Valepar SA agreed to stay together for up to 3-1/2 more years. Under those terms, they will present a proposal soon by which Vale will incorporate Valepar and proceed to merge the company’s several classes of stock into a single, common one by November.

The existing 20-year accord governing Valepar that expires in May will be extended through November to guarantee the transition. Holders of Vale’s Class A preferred shares who join the share conversion voluntarily will receive 0.9342 common stock, as part of the process. Continue Reading →

UPDATE 1-Key Vale partners want to keep CEO to stem political pressure -Valor (Reuters U.S. – February 13, 2017)

http://www.reuters.com/

Feb 13 Vale SA’s top non-government shareholders want Chief Executive Officer Murilo Ferreira in the job for another two years to stem pressure from Brazilian politicians to appoint an ally at the helm of the world’s No. 1 iron ore producer, newspaper Valor Econômico said on Monday.

Valor, which cited unnamed people familiar with the matter, said some members of Vale’s controlling bloc were considering voting for the renewal of Ferreira’s term when it expires next quarter. Bradespar SA and Japan’s Mitsui & Co are the private-sector members of the bloc.

Valor said members of President Michel Temer’s PMDB party and Senator Aecio Neves of the PSDB party from the mineral-rich Minas Gerais state, where Vale is based, were vying to influence the selection of the new CEO. Such disputes have gone on for months, Valor said. Continue Reading →

Antam faces test as Indonesia shifts mining policy – by Erwida Maulia (Asia Nikkei – January 19, 2017)

http://asia.nikkei.com/

Resumption of nickel exports may upend corporate plans

JAKARTA — Indonesia’s surprise decision on the evening of Jan. 12, after the markets closed, to ease its mineral export ban sent ripples through Asia’s nickel industry. Shares of nickel producers in the region plummeted the day after the announcement on fears of a sudden supply surge.

Vale Indonesia, Indonesia’s largest nickel producer and the local unit of Brazilian mining giant Vale, saw its share price plunge more than 15%, while Philippine miner Nickel Asia tumbled more than 10% at one point. Australia’s Western Areas fell nearly 20%, prompting one Australian media report to describe Jakarta’s decision as a “Black Friday blow.”

One company, though, stood out in the crowd. Indonesian state miner Aneka Tambang saw its shares jump 6%. That was because the government decided to allow exports of low-grade nickel ore – defined as ore containing less than 1.7% nickel to resume — raising hopes that Antam, as the company is better known, can reap benefits from the decision. Continue Reading →

BHP-Vale Mine Restart Encounters New Obstacle: Small-Town Mayor – by R.T. Watson (Bloomberg News – January 26, 2017)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

BHP Billiton Ltd. and Vale SA’s crippled Samarco mine, once the world’s second-largest producer of iron-ore pellets, has a new obstacle threatening to slow its much-anticipated restart: a small-town mayor.

The Brazilian city of Santa Barbara declined to sign off this week on a plan for Samarco to continue to use water from a nearby river. Without the approval, Samarco won’t be able to complete an ongoing environmental study required by state regulators for a restart, a person familiar with the matter said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private.

“There are environmental impacts related to the water supply that need to be thoroughly studied,” Leris Braga, the 34-year-old mayor of the town of 30,000 people in Minas Gerais state, said by telephone. He is calling for a separate study to be done to test for possible disruptions to water flow. Continue Reading →