There’s one thing Donald Trump is already making great again: a small Canadian explorer with rights to one of the world’s largest undeveloped copper and gold deposits.
Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd. has more than tripled since the U.S. election to approach a four-year high this week amid speculation the incoming administration will allow the explorer’s long-stalled Pebble project in Alaska to move ahead. Last week, the Vancouver-based company drummed up C$43 million ($32.4 million) in a secondary share offering to investors eager for a stake in a resource it estimates at more than 6 billion tons of ore.
That’s quite a revival for Northern Dynasty, whose sole project had appeared all but dead only a year ago. After peaking at a market value of almost $2 billion in 2011, the company’s luck turned — it was abandoned by Anglo American Plc and Rio Tinto Group amid a commodity rout, and it was obstructed by the Environmental Protection Agency after the project had already burned through more than $550 million.
Northern Dynasty’s latest quarterly results showed its cash holdings had dwindled to less than C$8 million. “On Friday, Trump gets inaugurated — that’s a good thing,” said John Tumazos, a Holmdel, New Jersey-based independent mining analyst, who owns Northern Dynasty shares and believes the EPA under Trump will reverse a 2014 move to prevent Pebble from obtaining a permit.
Nomination hearings began Wednesday for Trump’s pick to head the agency, Scott Pruitt, a climate-change skeptic who has called for “regulatory rollback.” That can’t happen soon enough for Northern Dynasty.
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