Arizona shares tumble on speculation – by Salma Tarikh (Northern Miner – January 1, 2017)

Global mining news

Arizona Mining (TSX: AZ) shares slightly recovered on promising assays from the Taylor zinc-lead sulphide deposit at its Hermosa property, following a sharp decline after a mining publication raised concerns about the marketability of Taylor’s zinc concentrates, before sliding again.

Located 10 km from the town of Patagonia and 80 km southeast of Tucson, Ariz., the high-grade zinc deposit contains 28.3 million indicated tonnes grading 10.9% zinc equivalent and 75 million inferred tonnes at 11.1% zinc equivalent, using a 4% zinc equivalent cut-off grade. Exploration success at Taylor this year coupled with higher zinc prices have skyrocketed the company’s shares.

On Dec. 7, the stock touched a 52-week high of $3.49, up 947% from its 2015 close of 32.5¢. A day earlier the company had closed a $36-million bought deal with underwriters led by Scotia Capital, National Bank Financial, RBC Capital Markets, TD Securities and Raymond James. It sold 11.8 million shares at $3.05 apiece.

Arizona shares, however, spiralled downward after the Global Mining Observer (GMO) claimed Taylor’s zinc concentrates contained too much manganese — possibly making them unsalable. The Dec. 11 article compared the deposit to the infamous Bre-X Minerals scandal, likely causing some investors to sell. The stock lost 20% over three days.

The company — led by Jim Gowans, formerly co-president of Barrick Gold (TSX: ABX; NYSE: ABX) — fired back the next day. Arizona called the article that GMO has since retracted “misleading.” It said the article implied that Hermosa’s Taylor and Central manganese-silver oxide deposits were the same deposit.

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