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South America News

Gold majors report upbeat Q3 earnings as costs continue to fall

By: Henry Lazenby     Updated 2 hours 7 minutes ago The major gold producers on Wednesday reported mostly positive results for the three months ended September, saying profits increased while costs continued to fall in a higher gold price environment. The world’s largest gold producer by output Barrick Gold reported adjusted earnings of $0.24 a... 

Australian media quote Gold Fields’ Holland as tipping ‘aggressive’ M&A

By: Martin Creamer     26th October 2016 Australia’s Financial Review on Wednesday quoted Gold Fields CEO Nick Holland as predicting "aggressive" merger and acquisition (M&A) activity, while The Western Australian reported the company’s intention to sink up to $500-million over five years in ground around its existing mines. Both... 

Australian media quote Gold Fields’ Holland as tipping ‘aggressive’ M&A
Photo by Duane Daws
Gold Fields CEO Nick Holland

Iron giants target used gyms, generic parts to slice costs

By: Bloomberg     26th October 2016 From buying second-hand gym equipment to generic replacement parts, the world’s biggest iron ore producers are using increased ingenuity to keep on cutting costs at their mines – but it’s getting tougher. Even as Fortescue Metals Group sources more parts from China and automates trucks and... 

A 300% rally that has investors questioning Anglo’s plan to sell

By: Bloomberg     26th October 2016 When a company quadruples in value over nine months, it’s unusual for the biggest investors to say management has the wrong strategy. But that’s exactly what’s happening with  Anglo American Plc, the mining company that is the U.K.’s best-performing blue-chip stock this year. In February, Anglo... 

Caterpillar’s Q3 profit sags, casts dim outlook with lowered 2016 guidance

By: Henry Lazenby     26th October 2016 The world’s largest earthmoving and mining equipment manufacturer Caterpillar has booked a sharply lower third-quarter profit, citing global economic weakness and an abundance of used equipment available, which is slowing sales. The NYSE-listed company expressed concern that the tough market... 

Caterpillar’s Q3 profit sags, casts dim outlook with lowered 2016 guidance

Sherritt widens loss as output slows; lowers Ambatovy FY guidance

By: Henry Lazenby     25th October 2016 Canadian diversified miner Sherritt International Resources has, for the second time this year, cut the nickel guidance at the 40%-owned Ambatovy mine, in Madagascar, citing a tailings pipe blockage and total shutdown that occurred in June and July, followed by weak output in August. The... 

Sherritt widens loss as output slows; lowers Ambatovy FY guidance
Photo by Sherritt International
Ambatovy, Madagascar

Freeport reports weaker Q3 results, lowers sales guidance

By: Henry Lazenby     25th October 2016 The world’s largest publicly traded copper producer Freeport-McMoRan on Tuesday announced third-quarter results weaker that analyst predictions, saying it now also expects to sell less copper, gold and molybdenum in 2016. Phoenix-based Freeport now expects to sell about 4.8-billion pounds of... 

Freeport reports weaker Q3 results, lowers sales guidance

Brazil's Vale sees 50m tonnes of iron-ore entering 2017 market

By: Reuters     25th October 2016 Brazilian miner Vale expects 50-million tonnes of new iron-ore production to enter the global market in 2017, but it should be offset by falling production in China and increased steel demand, a company executive said at a conference in Rio de Janeiro. 

Operational improvements continue across Anglo portfolio

By: Martin Creamer     25th October 2016 Operational improvements continue across the portfolio of Anglo American, which delivered an overall superior production performance in the three months to end September. On a copper equivalent basis, the London- and Johannesburg-listed diversified mining company beat previous third-quarter... 

Operational improvements continue across Anglo portfolio
Photo by Duane Daws
Anglo American CEO Mark Cutifani

Brazil's Samarco misses second bond interest payment in a month

By: Reuters     25th October 2016 Samarco Mineração, the Brazilian iron-ore mining joint venture that suspended operations in November following a dam disaster, on Monday said it had missed a $20-million interest payment related to a senior unsecured bond due in 2023. The payment on the $700-million bond was due on Monday and... 

Xtract confident of company’s future after halting Chile mine investment

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     24th October 2016 Xtract Resources’ decision to no longer provide finance to Minera Polar Limitada, the owner of the Chepica gold/copper mine, in Chile, has stopped the severe financial haemorrhaging the company had suffered over the past year. In September, Xtract decided to pull the plug on its investment in the... 

Gold Fields maintains FY output guidance despite 4% y/y drop in Q3 output

By: David Oliveira     24th October 2016 Gold major Gold Fields’ attributable equivalent gold production for the quarter to September 30, decreased by 4% year-on-year to 537 000 oz. Production was, however, 2% higher than the 529 000 oz produced in the second quarter of the year. 

Gold Fields maintains FY output guidance despite 4% y/y drop in Q3 output
Photo by Duane Daws
Gold Fields CEO Nick Holland

MMG hopes to restart Peru exports

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     24th October 2016 Metals miner MMG is hopeful that concentrate trucking from its Las Bambas copper project, in Peru, will resume in the coming days as regional unrest quiets down. MMG has previously reported that logistics at the Las Bambas operation were temporarily disrupted by ongoing community protests,... 

Largo on track for further quarterly ops improvement as vanadium market turns

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd October 2016 A string of quarterly performance improvements by Canadian vanadium producer Largo Resources bodes well for third-quarter numbers at the Maracás Menchen mine, in Bahia state, Brazil, to follow the same record-setting trend. “The company is looking to beat previous numbers,” president and CEO Mark... 

Largo on track for further quarterly ops improvement as vanadium market turns
Photo by Henry Lazenby
Vanadium pentoxide at Largo Resources' Maracas Menchen mine, Brazil

Goldman sees China’s ‘stealth’ coal bailout lasting to 2020

By: Bloomberg     22nd October 2016 China’s coal production restrictions are a “stealth” bailout for miners and their creditors that may last until the end of the decade as the policies help boost prices, according to Goldman Sachs Group. Without government intervention, China’s coal industry wouldn’t be able to service the nearly... 

China visit helps Duterte reap funding deals worth $24b 

By: Bloomberg     22nd October 2016 Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte will bring home $24-billion worth of funding and investment pledges from his four-day visit to China as both nations agreed to resume talks and explore areas of cooperation in the South China Sea. China will provide $9-billion in soft loans, including a... 

Codelco copper premiums $80 to $85 Europe, $70 China – sources

By: Reuters     22nd October 2016 The world's biggest copper miner, Codelco, has slashed its 2017 physical copper premium to European buyers to the $80 to $85 per tonne range and is offering Chinese buyers a premium of around $70, three traders told Reuters this week. That would represent a deep cut from last year, underlining... 

SilverCrest receives underground drilling permit for Phase 2 of Las Chispas

By: Anine Kilian     21st October 2016 SilverCrest Metals has received the underground drilling permit, including the permission to mine a 100 000 t bulk sample for offsite testing and processing, for Phase 2 of its Mexico-based Las Chispas exploration project. Phase 2 will begin in November and will test potential near-surface... 

Orinoco halts Cascavel operations for technical review

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     21st October 2016 ASX-listed junior Orinoco Gold has temporarily suspended operations at its Cascavel gold mine, in Brazil, as the operation failed to meet expectations. Orinoco said on Friday that non-essential staff and contractors would be stood down while a full technical review of the operation was... 

Top copper miner gets reprieve as Chile signals more funding

By: Bloomberg     21st October 2016 Codelco’s prospect of remaining as the world’s biggest copper miner received a boost on Thursday as Chile signaled it will increase funding for the state company to overhaul aging mines and head off a slump in output. Chile is already investing a lot in Codelco and will have to provide “slightly... 

BHP employees face criminal charges over Brazil mine collapse

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     21st October 2016 Mining major BHP Billiton has said it will defend charges against the company, after Brazilian federal prosecutors filed criminal charges against the company and some of its current and former employees. Brazil charged 22 people, 21 of whom are charged with qualified homicide and environmental... 

BHP employees face criminal charges over Brazil mine collapse

Argentina adopts Canada’s sustainable mining initiative

By: Samantha Herbst     20th October 2016 Argentina’s national mining association, Cámara Argentina de Empresarios Mineros (CAEM), has announced that it will adopt Canada’s Towards Sustainable Mining (TSM) initiative, a corporate social responsibility programme developed by the Mining Association of Canada (MAC) to improve environmental... 

Brazil's Vale trims forecast for 2017 iron-ore output

By: Reuters     20th October 2016 Brazilian miner Vale SA trimmed its forecast for iron-ore output in 2017 on Thursday, as the world's largest producer of the steel-making raw material continued to phase out higher-cost production amid lower commodity prices. In its third-quarter production report, Vale said it expected to... 

Brazil's Vale trims forecast for 2017 iron-ore output

Brazil to offer thousands of mineral rights areas in H1 2017

By: Reuters     20th October 2016 Brazil's government plans to sell rights to as many as 22 000 mineral exploration areas in the first half of 2017, the president of the country's geological service (CPRM) Leonardo Ledsham said on Wednesday. Brazil also plans to sell nine large, strategic mining projects, he said, including: the... 

Rio Tinto cuts 2016 iron-ore target by 10Mt

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     20th October 2016 Diversified miner Rio Tinto has downgraded its iron-ore shipment expectations for 2016, after port and rail maintenance during the third quarter reduced shipments by 5% year-on-year to 80.9-million tonnes. Rio is now expecting to ship between 325-million and 330-million tonnes of iron-ore in... 

Rio Tinto cuts 2016 iron-ore target by 10Mt
Rio Tinto CEO Jean-Sebastian Jacques

Acid mine water quick-fix possible as water deficit looms, Oppenheimer, De Beers told 

By: Martin Creamer     19th October 2016 Water-constrained Gauteng may see an acid mine drainage (AMD) quick-fix in order to save the fresh water from the Lesotho Highlands Water Project from being wasted on AMD dilution instead of being available to the economy, environmental adviser Dr Anthony Turton said on Wednesday. Delivering the... 

Acid mine water quick-fix possible as water deficit looms, Oppenheimer, De Beers told
Photo by Duane Daws
Environmental adviser Dr Anthony Turton

Gold seen climbing in 'mildly bullish' scenario on low rates

By: Bloomberg     19th October 2016 Gold is set to rise about 7% by the time of the London Bullion Market Association conference in October 2017, according to a survey of people attending this year’s gathering in Singapore. Silver will gain 18%. The yellow metal will trade at $1 347.40/oz in a year’s time compared with $1 262.40... 

BHP sees ‘early signs’ of market rebalancing

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     19th October 2016 Mining giant BHP Billiton CEO Andrew Mackenzie has expressed optimism about the outlook for commodity prices, reporting “early signs” of market rebalancing. “Fundamentals suggest both oil and gas markets will improve over the next 12 to 18 months. Iron-ore and metallurgical coal prices have been... 

BHP sees ‘early signs’ of market rebalancing
Photo by Bloomberg
BHP CEO Andrew Mackenzie

Aguia raises cash for Brazil phosphate project

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     19th October 2016 Phosphate developer Aguia Resources has raised A$8.5-million through a share placement to fund the completion of a bankable feasibility study (BFS) at its Tres Estradas project, in Brazil. Aguia issued some 85-million fully paid ordinary shares to institutional and sophisticated investors, at... 

Samarco could resume operations by mid-2017, Vale director says

By: Reuters     19th October 2016 It is "feasible" that iron-ore miner Samarco could resume operations by the middle of next year, a senior executive at Brazilian miner Vale SA said on Tuesday. "It does not make sense that every time there is an accident, as a penalty, the company should cease to exist," Clovis Torres, director... 

Samarco could resume operations by mid-2017, Vale director says

Brazil's new mining code must be re-worked to attract investment – official

By: Reuters     19th October 2016 A new code to govern Brazil's mining industry, which was first proposed in 2009 but has never made it past Congress, would create further uncertainty in the struggling sector and must be re-worked, the interim Mines and Energy minister said on Tuesday. Paulo Pedrosa, filling in for his boss... 

Glencore expands bond buyback as manages debt

By: Reuters     19th October 2016 Miner Glencore has increased the size of a bond buyback tender to $1.49-billion from $1.25-billion, it said on Tuesday, seeking to seize on favourable conditions to reduce its debt burden. Miners, which racked up high levels of debt last year after commodity prices crashed, are in a much stronger... 

Codelco unions say mulling company-wide strike at Chile's copper mines

By: Reuters     19th October 2016 Unionised workers at Chile's State-owned copper miner Codelco are mulling going on a company-wide strike, possibly by mid-November, if the government does not make progress on a number of demands, union leaders told Reuters on Tuesday. Codelco, the world No 1 copper producer, returns all its... 

Oppenheimer, De Beers polishing diamond tourism's sparkle 

By: Martin Creamer     18th October 2016 The priceless value of diamond properties to South African ecotourism was highlighted on Tuesday when the outcomes of a range of research projects were revealed at the seventh Oppenheimer De Beers Group Research Conference. Delivering a keynote address at the corporate headquarters of De Beers... 

Oppenheimer, De Beers polishing diamond tourism's sparkle
Diamond mining company De Beers outlines the Oppenheimer De Beers Group Research effort to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Photographs: Duane Daws. Video and Video Editing: Nicholas Boyd

Argonaut lowers FY guidance as abnormal weather, mine sequencing impedes output

By: Henry Lazenby     18th October 2016 Canadian gold producer Argonaut Gold has lowered its full-year guidance by 15 000 gold-equivalent ounces (GEOs) to between 115 000 GEOs and 120 000 GEOs, after abnormally high rainfall and changes in mine sequencing impacted on production at the El Castillo mine, in Mexico. During the three... 

Glencore’s coal hedge gets more painful as prices rally

By: Bloomberg     18th October 2016 The rally in thermal coal is taking a bigger bite out of Glencore’s profits after the world’s biggest exporter of the fuel locked in prices prior to the surge. The Swiss company reported a $395-million mark-to-market non-cash loss in the first half on hedges for future sales, which applied to the... 

Glencore’s coal hedge gets more painful as prices rally

Peru protester shooting death at MMG mine sparks police probe

By: Bloomberg     18th October 2016 Peru’s government is investigating police conduct during demonstrations against MMG Ltd.’s giant Las Bambas copper mine on Friday that left one protester dead. Interior Minister Carlos Basombrio said a man was shot in the head and 20 police officers were injured during clashes near the mine in... 

Yamana Gold to spin off Brio subsidiary as standalone company

By: Reuters     18th October 2016 Canadian miner Yamana Gold said on Monday it plans to spin off its Brio Gold subsidiary, which owns noncore gold mining properties in Brazil, as a standalone public company to its shareholders. Yamana, a mid-sized gold producer, last November tried to reduce its 100% stake in Brio through a... 

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