Glencore Shares Skid as Metals Slump – by Scott Patterson and Ira Iosebashvili (Wall Street Journal – November 11, 2015)

A drop in copper prices and other mining commodities has halted a recent rebound in the company’s stock

Shares of Glencore PLC and other large miners plunged anew on Thursday, as a slump in copper prices revived worries about companies’ ability to shoulder large debt loads.

Glencore’s stock fell 7.6% to close below £1 for the first time in more than a month, bringing losses to 24% over the last six trading sessions.

The renewed weakness in the Swiss miner’s shares is a sign that investors are again jittery about the company’s ability to pay down billions in debt amid what many analysts say is likely to be a prolonged decline in commodity prices. Copper, which is Glencore’s main earnings driver, sank to a fresh six-year low on Thursday.

The selloff is stoking worries of a repeat of a late-September rout, when Glencore’s shares plummeted nearly 30% in one day. The shocking dive forced Glencore to take several actions to shore up its balance sheet and investor confidence.

Glencore declined to comment on Thursday.

Other big mining companies also took a hit, extending a sectorwide swoon that shows little sign of abating. Anglo American PLC, the fifth-largest miner by market value, tumbled 8.6% and is down 63% so far this year. Freeport-McMoRan Inc., one of the world’s largest copper producers, fell 5.8%.

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