Archive | Zinc and Lead

Zinc price spike sparks flurry of miner listings – by Nicole Mordant (Reuters India – October 13, 2017)

VANCOUVER, Oct 13 (Reuters) – A doubling in zinc prices since late 2015 and strong outlook for the commodity has fueled a flurry of zinc miner listings on the Toronto Stock Exchange as companies cash in on investor demand for producers of the metal.

Brazil-based Nexa Resources, a top five global zinc producer, is seeking to raise up to $651 million in an initial public offering in Toronto and New York in what would be the world’s biggest zinc-focused IPO since China’s Western Mining Co Ltd in 2007, according to Thomson Reuters data.

At least three other zinc miners, including Titan Mining and Dublin-based Group Eleven Resources Corp, are planning listings on the Toronto Stock Exchange or the TSX Venture Exchange (TSX-V) market for small start-ups, according to company filings. Continue Reading →

Gold, zinc explorers spearhead reversal of five-year global exploration downturn – by Samantha Herbst ( – October 10, 2017)

JOHANNESBURG ( – Boosted by increased exploration efforts in the gold and zinc sectors, the global nonferrous exploration budget is up in 2017 – for the first time since 2012 – by more than 14%, year-on-year, to $7.95-billion, according to new analysis by S&P Global Market Intelligence.

The twenty-eighth edition of the firm’s ‘Corporate Exploration Strategies’ (CES) report reveals that global gold budgets are up 22% year-on-year, while zinc-focused producers and junior explorers have boosted the zinc budget by 29% year-on-year to $489-million, based on improved zinc prices since early 2016.

“We know that the juniors have endured the worst of the downturn since 2012, accounting for most of the 40% drop in the number of active explorers over the past five years. Continue Reading →

Zinc Prices Have Rallied So Much Even Miners Are Complaining – by Kevin Crowley (Bloomberg News – October 5, 2017)

Zinc’s dramatic surge to the highest in a decade might boost profits in the short term but isn’t all good news for producers, according to Vedanta Resources Plc.

Buyers are struggling to make money at current levels after prices more than doubled since the start of 2016, Deshnee Naidoo, the chief executive officer of the company’s Vedanta Zinc International unit, said in an interview.

“The whole market is out of whack,” Naidoo said in Johannesburg on Thursday. “In the short term it’s a good price, but it’s not a sustainable price. There needs to be an incentive price for galvanizers, alloy producers, smelters.” Continue Reading →

Glencore to wield power on zinc – by Stephen Bartholomeusz (The Australian – October 4, 2017)

Glencore’s decision to invest up to $US956 million to greatly increase its shareholding in a Peruvian zinc miner may have been motivated by an insight it gained during its dark days in 2015.

Overnight Glencore announced it had reached agreement with shareholders of Volcan Compania Minera, one of the world’s largest producers of zinc, lead and silver, to acquire 27 per cent of the group’s class A shares for $US531 million.

It will make an offer to other Volcan shareholders for up to 48 per cent of the class A shares, which would lift the outlay closer to $US1 billion. Depending on the level of acceptances, Glencore would end up with between 48 per cent and 66 per cent of the class A shares, which have voting rights. It had a pre-existing holding of about 18 per cent of those shares. Continue Reading →

Glencore to spend $956M to increase stake in Peru’s largest zinc producer – by Cecilia Jamasmie ( – October 2, 2017)

Miner and commodities trader Glencore (LON:GLEN) is buying 26.73% of the voting shares in Peru’s largest zinc producer, Volcan Compañía Minera SAA, in a deal worth at least $531 million.

The Swiss company will pay $1.215 per class A common share, which will help it boost its current 7.68% interest in Volcan and which could cost Glencore as much as $956 million, depending on the level of acceptances.

“Volcan’s operations are located in the richest polymetallic production area in Peru, producing some of the highest quality zinc concentrates,” it said in the statement. Continue Reading →

COLUMN-Zinc spreads explode as tightness bites London shorts – by Andy Home (Reuters U.K. – September 26, 2017)

LONDON, Sept 26 (Reuters) – Zinc bulls have been waiting a long time for this, but the slow-burning supply crunch has at last travelled all the way down the supply chain to bite holders of short positions on the London Metal Exchange (LME). LME time spreads exploded last week and they’ve grown wilder still this week.

The benchmark cash to three-month spread CMZN0-3 closed on Monday at a backwardation of $66 a tonne. That’s the widest cash premium since January 2007. Contraction of the forward curve reflects acute tightness on the cash date itself as evidenced by continuing turbulence within even the shortest-dated of LME spreads.

With exchange stocks falling and more metal being cancelled before physical load-out, those who have taken short positions look set for a torrid time. However, this sort of extreme tightness on the LME could yet prove a double-edged sword for bulls if it sucks “hidden” metal out of off-market storage. Continue Reading →

Rally in zinc price raises spectre of substitution – by Eric Onstad (Reuters U.S. – September 19, 2017)

LONDON, Sept 19 (Reuters) – A sharp rally in zinc prices is posing the threat that industrial users will find ways to substitute the metal with cheaper alternatives or use less, curbing overall consumption.

High prices may also dampen a nascent move by Chinese automakers to use more zinc for galvanising, while the Western car sector could employ thinner coats of zinc alloys to help meet tough emission rules by cutting vehicle weight.

“We expect zinc prices to carry on going up for at least another 12 months, so I think there’s clearly a growing risk of demand destruction in some shape or form,” said analyst Andrew Thomas at consultancy Wood Mackenzie. Benchmark zinc on the London Metal Exchange has doubled since January last year, hitting a peak of $3,231.75 a tonne in late August, the highest in a decade. Continue Reading →

Teck ups Red Dog guidance; outlines significant exploration target for Aktigiruq – by Henry Lazenby ( – September 19, 2017)

VANCOUVER ( – Canada’s largest diversified miner Teck Resources has added about 50 000 t of zinc output to the full-year guidance for its Red Dog mine, in Alaska.

Vancouver-headquartered Teck advised that improving recoveries in the last few months has prompted the company to lift guidance to a range of 525 000 t to 550 000 t of zinc, up from the most recent guidance range of 475 000 t to 500 000 t of zinc.

The company increased production because of changes in mine sequencing and improved metallurgical recoveries, enabling higher-grade mill feed with a greater percentage of ore from the Qanaiyaq pit in the second half of the year. Meanwhile, Teck expects yearly zinc output at Red Dog over the next five years to range between 475 000 t and 550 000 t of zinc. Continue Reading →

Long-awaited N.W.T. mining road through national park gets thumbs up from review board (CBC News North – September 14, 2017)

The much-anticipated all-season road to Canadian Zinc’s Prairie Creek mine passed its environmental assessment this week, more than five years after the Prairie Creek mine was approved in the heart of Nahanni National Park Reserve.

The Mackenzie Valley Review Board announced Tuesday it is recommending the project to the Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs for conditional approval. This week’s green light marks the end of a process that lasted more than three years. The nearby Nahanni Butte Dene Band grew impatient, and began construction on their own road to the mine.

However, the board’s support is contingent on the implementation of 16 measures it says will prevent “significant adverse impacts on the environment.” Among those measures: a road adapted for permafrost conditions, along with ongoing permafrost monitoring; wildlife monitoring that incorporates traditional knowledge; and the creation of an independent technical panel to ensure the road’s design protects people and the environment. Continue Reading →

Ivanhoe plans ‘new era of production’ for historic DRC mine – by Natasha Odendaal ( – September 6, 2017)

JOHANNESBURG ( – TSX-listed Ivanhoe Mines has entered into discussions to start a “new era of production” at the historic Kipushi zinc-copper-silver-germanium mine, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), that could deliver one of the highest-grade major zinc mines worldwide.

Ivanhoe, which, in conjunction with its 32% joint venture (JV) partner State-owned miner Gécamines, recently upgraded Kipushi, is now planning to restore production, with the JV, the Kipushi Corporation, focusing initial mining on the Big Zinc deposit.

Negotiations are under way with Gécamines and DRC’s national railway company Société Nationale des Chemins de Fer du Congo (SNCC), along with potential project financiers, to advance agreements to launch the new era of commercial production, said Ivanhoe executive chairperson Robert Friedland. Continue Reading →

Zinc on a bullish tear but just how high can it go? – by Andy Home (Reuters U.S. – August 21, 2017)

LONDON (Reuters) – Zinc on Monday morning hit a fresh decade high of $3,180.50 per tonne on the London Metal Exchange (LME). Zinc bulls have been waiting a long, long time for this moment. A slow-fuse narrative of a looming supply crunch has been simmering for years but has finally burst into explosive price action.

True, London zinc has been given a helping hand from Shanghai, where speculative froth seems to have spilled over from the iron ore and steel markets to the base metals complex.

And also true, a supply-side response to high zinc prices is already starting to build with old mines such as Thalanga in Australia being brought back out of mothballs and speculation mounting as to how long Swiss producer and trader Glencore will wait before reversing the production cuts it announced in 2015. Continue Reading →

Four warning signs that Teck’s spectacular gains are over – by David Berman (Globe and Mail – August 18, 2017)

Teck Resources Ltd. rewards nimble investors who can move against the current, selling the stock when times are good and buying it when the outlook is dismal. Today, conditions are excellent for the Vancouver-based miner, and that suggests shareholders should consider departing from this roller coaster of an investment.

On the surface, this might not sound like a great idea, given Teck’s stellar second-quarter results, released late last month. Teck, which produces copper, zinc and steelmaking coal from mines in Canada, the United States, Chile and Peru, topped analysts’ estimates with a profit of $577-million or $1 a share – way up from a profit of just 3 cents a share a year ago.

Analysts had been expecting a profit of 90 cents a share, according to Reuters. The company’s debt levels are also falling, which is good. Net debt per share declined to $9.59, according to a report from Canaccord Genuity, down from $13.42 a share last year, which is a steeper drop than analysts had been expecting. Continue Reading →

Zinc Breaks Through $3,000 Barrier as Metals Rally Gathers Pace (Bloomberg News – August 16, 2017)

Zinc surged above $3,000 a metric ton for the first time in almost a decade while aluminum approached a three-year high, adding momentum to a metals rally fueled by bets on tightening supplies and robust demand.

Zinc jumped as much as 5.8 percent to $3,132.50 a ton on the London Metal Exchange, the highest since 2007, before settling at $3,119 at 5:51 p.m. in London. Aluminum rose as much as 2.7 percent to the highest since September 2014, while nickel, copper and lead also advanced. The rally boosted mining shares, with Freeport-McMoRan Inc. among the biggest gainers.

An index of base metals has climbed to a more-than two-year high amid better-than-expected demand in China and a weakening dollar. The Asian nation is stepping up efforts to shut illegal aluminum and steel plants to cut emissions and excess capacity. Continue Reading →

COLUMN-Lead gets unforeseen boost from North Korean sanctions – by Andy Home (Reuters U.K. – August 17, 2017)

LONDON, Aug 17 (Reuters) – Lead has been an unlikely and unforeseen beneficiary of the North Korea missile crisis. A new round of U.N. sanctions includes North Korean exports of lead concentrate. China, which signed up to the U.S.-drafted resolution, will lose an increasingly significant flow of raw materials to its lead smelters.

The news has reinvigorated a market that had lost its bull narrative thread. London Metal Exchange (LME) lead for three-months delivery hit a nine-month high of $2,537 per tonne on Thursday morning.

Not as exciting as zinc, which has just surged to its highest level in over a decade. But being overshadowed by its more glamorous sister metal is nothing new for lead. Characterised by a lack of statistical clarity and only sporadic news flow, lead tends to get regularly punished on the London market in the form of the popular relative value trade against zinc. Continue Reading →

Artists, hippies, miners — Patagonia divided over hamlet’s economic future – by Lucas Waldron (Arizona Daily Star – August 13, 2017)

Patagonia has one bar, one coffee shop, one gas station. And customers at nearly all of them are divided between those in favor of a new mining project in this tiny southeastern-Arizona town and those against it.

Roughly half of Patagonia’s 900 residents support Arizona Mining Inc., a Canadian company that recently bought land near town for exploratory drilling. The rest oppose the mining company, seeking to preserve the region’s unique rare wildlife and steer the economy away from mineral extraction and toward environmental restoration.

Arizona Mining Inc. has vowed to create an estimated 500 jobs through a mine it plans to have up and running in 2020. In July, the company predicted the mine will extract 10,000 tons of minerals per day and could be viable for eight years. Continue Reading →