Opinion: Welcome to the accidental iron ore boom – by Elizabeth Knight (Sydney Morning Herald – February 13, 2019)


Even a month ago it would have seemed fanciful for anyone to suggest iron ore prices would be heading towards $US100 per tonne ($A141.33). But the market dynamics have changed.

Welcome to the accidental mining boom. There is a lot at stake in this latest boom for the profits of BHP, Rio Tinto and Fortescue not to mention the potential swell to the federal government’s coffers.

Just how meaningful the uplift will be for all involved depends on how long the current boomtime prices are sustained. With futures now hitting more than $US96 commodities experts are scrambling to assess how this will play out.

Understandably the Australian producers that will benefit from the pricing spike have no stomach for gloating.

The tragic tailings dam accident in Vale’s Brazil operations that forced it to shutter operations and caused the sudden supply shortage, and the resulting boost in the ore price, is horrendous. The death toll from the January 25 disaster has stretched well above 100 with scores more victims unaccounted for and feared dead.

For the rest of this article: https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/welcome-to-the-accidental-iron-ore-boom-20190212-p50xap.html