Archive | Zinc, Lead and Tin

New job for former Vale boss – by Staff (Sudbury Star – April 10, 2019)

https://www.thesudburystar.com/

Ricus Grimbeek didn’t say unemployed for long. Grimbeek, who left suddenly in February as Vale’s chief operating officer, North Atlantic operations and Asian refineries, is now president and chief executive officer of Trevali Mining Corporation. Grimbeek was with Vale for less than a year.

“We are thrilled to welcome Ricus Grimbeek as Trevali’s president and CEO,” Jessica McDonald, chair of the board, said in a release. “Ricus brings extensive global experience to Trevali, both as a corporate executive and as a mine operator, and has a proven track record of operating safe and efficient businesses with a focus on asset optimization and strong cost performance.

“He combines deep knowledge of mining processes and technology, and decades of hands-on global mining experience, with a progressive approach to mining that places a high priority on safety, sustainability and responsibility. Continue Reading →

Top 10 Deepest Mines In The World: Most Of Them Are Gold Mines – by Vikas Shukla (Value Walk.com – April 10, 2019)

https://www.valuewalk.com/

South Africa is home to eight of the world’s top 10 deepest mines. The country has been one of the world’s largest gold producers for decades, even though gold production there has been declining in recent years. A mine is an artificially made pit from where minerals and other resources are extracted. The depth of a mine represents the elevation from the entrance to the deepest excavation point.

The ranking below includes only operational mines, not the ones that are no longer in operation. For instance, the Empire Mine in California has a depth of 2.08 miles, but it’s no longer in operation. Similarly, the Kolar Gold Fields in India, which was 2 miles deep, was shut down in 2001 due to low levels of output after producing gold for centuries.

When they run out of minerals at existing levels, mining companies prefer to go deeper in existing mines to extract more minerals instead of digging a new mine. Continue Reading →

Column: LME zinc running on empty as stocks keep falling – by Andy Home (Reuters U.K. – March 19, 2019)

https://uk.reuters.com/

LONDON (Reuters) – Another 100 tonnes of zinc were loaded out of the London Metal Exchange (LME) warehouse system on Monday. It wasn’t the most dramatic of moves but sufficient to reduce LME stocks to a fresh 12-year low of 58,325 tonnes – less than two days’ worth of global consumption and within touching distance of this century’s nadir of 58,100 tonnes recorded in October 2007.

Such desperately low inventory has rekindled zinc’s bull flames. The LME three-month price rose to an eight-month high of $2,882 per tonne last week, up 18 percent this year, before easing slightly to current levels of $2,800.

Time spreads remain tight and volatile but the premium for cash metal has so far failed to attract anything more than a smattering of fresh deliveries. The persistent tightness of LME stocks is forcing a collective rethink about the outlook for zinc, particularly the much anticipated shift to supply surplus. Continue Reading →

HISTORY & CULTURE: ‘The industrial revolution started here’ – by Vangmayi Parakala (The Hindu – March 15, 2019)

https://www.thehindu.com/

The 2019 Colonel James Tod Awardee, British Musem’s Dr. Paul Craddock talks of early metallurgy in Rajasthan, and how it influenced Europe

At sunset, below the ramparts of the Udaipur City Palace, the Maharana of Mewar Charitable Foundation (MMCF) recognised service towards nation-building, art, conservation, and culture with their 37th annual awards ceremony this weekend. Along with former ISRO chair Dr. Krishnaswamy Kasturirangan as chief guest, the MMCF’s chairman, ‘Maharana’ Arvind Singh Mewar, presented the honours.

The foundation has 13 instituted awards, of which the Colonel James Tod Award recognises a foreign national’s service or contribution to the country in line with the “spirit and values of Mewar”. Dr. Paul T. Craddock, a scientist attached to the British Museum, was this year’s recipient.

Craddock has been studying early metallurgy in India, especially in the Zawar region, a mining township about 40 kilometres from Udaipur. Previous recipients of this award include journalist Sir Mark Tully and author V.S. Naipaul. Continue Reading →

Column: China’s supercharged imports fail to stir lead market – by Andy Home (Reuters U.K. – March 5, 2019)

https://uk.reuters.com/

LONDON (Reuters) – China imported 128,000 tonnes of refined lead last year, bringing the two-year cumulative total to 206,000 tonnes. The only precedent for this pace of import was 2009, when China soaked up 157,000 tonnes of refined lead.

It’s a problematic comparison though, given lead prices and arbitrage were distorted back then by the global financial crisis and Beijing’s resulting rush to support its own producers. The import surge dried up in 2010 and China became a net exporter of refined lead to the rest of the world over the 2013-2016 period.

The scale of imports since then is a clear sign there is a real physical shortfall in China, normally the sort of narrative to excite metals bulls. This being lead, however, you’d be hard pushed to discern even the faintest flicker of bullish enthusiasm in either the Shanghai or London futures markets. Continue Reading →

Column: As price hits seven-month highs, it may be time to rethink zinc – by Andy Home (Reuters U.K. – February 6, 2019)

https://uk.reuters.com/

LONDON (Reuters) – Zinc has been on the climb this year, defying broader macroeconomic gloom and a previous consensus that its bull run was well and truly over.

Funds are creeping back into the market on the long side and LME broker Marex Spectron estimates speculators held a collective net long of 7 percent of open interest last Friday.

On the London Metal Exchange (LME) three-month zinc hit a seven-month high of $2,810 a tonne on Tuesday. It retraced to $2,715 on Wednesday morning but is still the second-strongest performer among the core base metals this year with a gain of 13 percent. Only nickel has fared better. Continue Reading →

[Zinc] The conditions are ripe for a spike in the price of this metal – here’s how to invest – by Dominic Frisby (Money Week – January 23, 2019)

Money Week

Zinc is the subject of today’s Money Morning. We consider the metal, its uses, the state of the market – and we end with some possible ways to play the market, including two speculative miners. Why zinc specifically? Because there is a potential shortfall in supply which could lead to a spike in the price.

Why is zinc in the doldrums?

Let’s start with the metal itself. After iron, copper and aluminium, zinc is the fourth most used metal in the world. Its main use is in the construction industry: the frames of buildings, bridges, roofs, staircases, beams and piping all contain zinc. A coating of zinc over iron or steel protects the metal beneath from rusting.

It is also used in alloys (brass and bronze), in compounds with a range of applications, particularly in batteries – from everyday AAs and AAAs to silver-zinc batteries in aerospace – and, increasingly, in fertiliser. Continue Reading →

Five base metal projects underway in the Yukon – by Brian Sylvester (Northern Miner – January 9, 2019)

Northern Miner

Mining chatter in the Yukon these days is all about the yellow metal. It’s been that way for at least 10 years, according to geologist Mike Burke, who spent more than 20 years working for the Yukon Geological Survey before moving to the private sector.

“People were having a hard time in 2008, and then along came Kinross and bought Underworld Resources. That started an area play,” Burke recalls. Now headlines echo the shift toward the Yukon’s second gold rush. Victoria Gold (TSXV: VIT) is hurriedly building Eagle, the biggest gold mine in the history of the territory.

Goldcorp (TSX: G; NYSE: GG), fresh on the heels of a recent agreement with the Tr’ondek Hwech’in First Nation, is seeking to wrap up permitting this year at the 5 million oz. Coffee gold project, which should reach commercial production by 2021, in the White Gold district. Continue Reading →

Hudbay Minerals’ exit from historic Manitoba mining town puts 800 jobs in peril – by Gabriel Friedman (Financial Post – November 30, 2018)

https://business.financialpost.com/

Hudbay Minerals Inc. says it will close its mine in Flin Flon, Man. in 2021, ending hopes it would maintain a threadbare workforce in the town where it employed more than 800 people.

In a memo this week, Robert Assabgui, vice-president of Hudbay’s Manitoba Business Unit, told employees the company had hoped to keep the zinc plant operational, but can’t find enough ore to make it feasible.

“Despite a lot of work over the past few years, the most likely scenario is that mining operations will cease in Flin Flon in 2021,” Assabgui wrote in the memo, also sent to the Financial Post. “As a result, the Flin Flon mill will also cease operations.” Continue Reading →

COLUMN-Zinc market enters period of peak tightness – by Andy Home (Reuters U.S. – November 20, 2018)

https://www.reuters.com/

LONDON, Nov 20 (Reuters) – The London zinc market is experiencing unprecedented tightness this week. As of Monday’s close, the London Metal Exchange’s (LME) benchmark cash-to-three-months spread CMZN0-3 was valued at a backwardation of $97 per tonne.

The cash premium is now higher than the last spike in October 2017 with the only historical comparison the years 2006-2007, when LME stocks were also super low and the outright price hit an all-time high of $4,580 per tonne. Fast forward a decade and the LME three-month price is currently treading water around $2,600, a long way off its February high of $3,600 per tonne.

This dissonance between spreads and price is a manifestation of the greater financialisation of the zinc market over the intervening decade with fund money a more powerful price driver. And funds have been playing zinc from the short side since February, catching the unwary in a biting bear trap. Continue Reading →

PHOTOS: Dust And Danger For Adults — And Kids — In Bolivia’s Mines – by Jake Harper (KNPR.org – November 17, 2018)

https://knpr.org/

Working in Bolivia’s mines is a family business. That’s what Italian photographer Simone Francescangeli saw when he traveled to the city of Potosí of about 250,000 to document the daily lives of miners.

They’re part of a centuries-old enterprise to extract silver, tin, zinc and gold from the mountains. He was struck by the harsh and sometimes dangerous conditions the miners work in — and by the number of children he saw working in the mines. Some were teenagers. One youngster said he was 11 years old.

In Potosí, many children work in mines, often joining their fathers or other family members in the tunnels when they’re not in school, says Andrea Marston, a researcher at University of California, Berkeley who studies Bolivian mining cooperatives. The money they earn allows them to play a part in supporting their families. Continue Reading →

In EV era, Brookfield and Caisse place $13-billion bet on conventional car battery maker – by Gabriel Friedman (Financial Post – November 14, 2018)

https://business.financialpost.com/

Electric vehicles will make up 15 per cent of all auto sales in a decade — that still leaves 85 per cent of the market to traditional cars

The rapid growth of the electric vehicle industry may be drawing headlines, but when it comes to drawing major investments, the internal combustion engine remains on solid footing.

In a deal that highlights the breadth of the traditional automotive industry, two Canadian investment funds on Tuesday announced a US$13.2-billion deal to purchase the leading global manufacturer of lead-acid batteries.

Toronto-based asset manager Brookfield Business Partners and pension manager Caisse de dêpôt et Placement du Québec (CDPQ) along with other investors will jointly acquire 100 per cent of Ireland-based Johnson Controls’ automotive business — which shipped 154 million automotive lead-acid batteries in 2017. Continue Reading →

The EPA Can’t Wait to Reopen the Mine That Poisoned North Idaho – by Peter Waldman (Bloomberg News – November 12, 2018)

https://www.bloomberg.com/

The Bunker Hill Mine deposited 75 million tons of toxic sludge in Lake Coeur d’Alene, and the lead and zinc are still flowing.

For a century, the mines of the Coeur d’Alene Mountains in North Idaho produced much of the heavy metals that made the U.S. a global superpower. Starting in the 1880s, through the rise of industrialization, the introduction of the automobile, and two world wars, a few narrow canyons in the Coeur d’Alenes yielded more than 11 million tons of zinc, lead, and silver, as much as a fifth of U.S. production.

Mining has left a mark on the culture of the Silver Valley and an indelible stain on the landscape, which remains heavily contaminated. To extract a pound of metal, mining companies had to process nearly 14 pounds of ore, and they dumped the crushed waste rock into mountain streams and along river banks.

Over the course of a century, the tailings and mine drainage flowed down the 40-mile-long watershed, depositing some 75 million tons of highly toxic sludge into Lake Coeur d’Alene. House cats convulsed from drinking the water. Continue Reading →

Cheers, tears as historic smelter from Magma Mine demolished in Superior – by Ryan Randazzo (Arizona Republic – November 10, 2018)

https://www.azcentral.com/

Cheers erupted at 8:46 a.m. Saturday in Superior after the historic copper smelter stack from the Magma Mine crashed to the ground. But the cheers only came because the controlled demolition offered such a spectacle. Many of the people lined up along the streets watching the destruction were sad to see the 293-foot brick stack fall.

Even though smoke hasn’t wafted from the top of the stack since 1971, the 94-year-old smelter about 60 miles east of downtown Phoenix was a symbol of the region’s mining heritage, and had sentimental value for those who lived and worked in Superior.

That includes Larry Palacio, a Gilbert retiree who spent more than 21 years working at the Magma Mine after he graduated from Superior High School in 1955. “I did just about everything,” he said, standing along Main Street waiting for the warning sirens before explosions that caused the stack to topple. “I was a mucker, mechanic, worked the cage.” Continue Reading →

COLUMN-Zinc market tightness confounds bearish expectations – by Andy Home (Reuters Africa – October 24, 2018)

https://af.reuters.com/

LONDON, Oct 24 (Reuters) – The refined zinc market looks super tight. London Metal Exchange zinc spreads are stressed, with the cash-to-three-months premium CMZN0-3 hitting a one-year high of $63 per tonne earlier this week.

LME stocks are low, at just 99,900 tonnes excluding metal earmarked for physical load-out. It’s the same story in Shanghai. Shanghai Futures Exchange (ShFE) zinc spreads are also in backwardation, while the premium for metal in bonded warehouses shot to multi-year highs in September.

ShFE stocks have rebuilt slightly since the start of the month to 53,500 tonnes. But that’s still well short of the 160,000 tonnes that were there as recently as April. Continue Reading →