|Mining, generell topic
|Starter en ny topic om temaet "Mining", som innebefatter alt som har med gruvedrift og metall- og mineral-produksjon å gjøre.
Topic'en kan sies videreføre den "gamle topic'en: Metall-rally, er Nikkel & Kobolt et alternativ?, som har et visst historisk innhold (siden den ble startet i Jan-2003).
Den er dog ikke blitt oppdatert det siste året, så derfor fant jeg det mer opportunt å starte en ny.
På tross av finanskrisen (eller gjeldskrisen) som vi (dvs. i-landene) er i, så ser de fleste råvarebransjene (som gruvebransjen) ut til å gjeninnhentet boom-trendene vi så fra 2003-2007.
Årsaken finner vi ikke i vår del av verden, for i de industrialiserte landene har etterspørselen etter slike varer ikke hentet seg igjen, og ligger stort sett betydelig under nivåene fra 2007.
Nei, årsaken finner vi i den økonomiske boom'en som bare ser ut til å fortsette i u-landene som har fått vekstsmaskineriet opp i et høygir igjen.
Enkelt sagt er det Kina, Kina, Kina som fortsatt driver markedene, og for mange råvarer er vekstprognosene enten høye 1-sifret eller 2-sifret % per år.
På slutten av dette 10-året (2001-2010) utgjør Kina's etterspørsel mellom 20 og 50% av verdensmarkedet for mange industrielle råvarer (commodities).
I slutten av dette 10-året vil vi se at Kina vil utgjøre >50% av verdensmarkedet for de samme råvarene, det være seg kull, jernmalm/stål, aluminium, kobber, nikkel, sink, sement etc.
Problemet for Kina (og delvis India som ligger ca. 10 år etter i utviklingsløypa), er at de ikke har de fysiske ressursene innenfor egne landegrenser, og er avhengig av en stadig økende import av disse, enten i ubearbeidet form (som malm eller halvfabrikata såsom konsentrater eller andre "intermediates") eller i ferdig bearbeidet form (raffinerte produkter), og det vil da være basis for forretningsideen til en stadig økende etablering av nye selskaper innenfor bransjen.
Endret 28.11.2010 12:20 av OldNick
|Pris- og lagerbildet for noen børsnoterte råvarer underbygger denne utsikten:
Metallpris- og lager diagrammene er hentet fra: http://metalprices.com/PubCharts/
Fra siden MetalPrices, som har lagt ut chart som kan linkes på private, interne nettsider.
Endret 28.11.2010 12:22 av OldNick
|Børsutviklingen for de globale, diversifiserte greuvegigantene viser samme bildet (i rekkefølge etter børsverdi):
BHP Billiton, Australia/UK (ASX:BHP, L:BLT, N:BHP)
VALE, Brazil (SaoPaulo:VALE3, N:VALE - ord., handles også i Paris og på Euronext) (SaoPaulo:VALE3 - pref.)
Rio Tinto, Australia/UK (ASX:RIO, L:RIO, N:RTP)
Xstrata, Sveits (Zurich:XTA, L:XTA)
Anglo American, Sør Afrika/UK (L:AAL, J.burg:)
Børsvedien på disse 5 ligger mellom ca. US$60 og 250 mrd.
Det er mye forventninger innebygget i disse chartene, det skal også være sagt.
Endret 28.11.2010 12:26 av OldNick
|Denne tankevekkende artikkelen kan danne en grei innledning til denne topic'en.
Gold Miners & Explorers Face Serious Supply Problems
Brent Cook, Exploration Insights, for The Gold Report
Geologist Brent Cook, of Exploration Insights, in this exclusive article for The Gold Report, takes a look at the major gold mining companies' dilemma-declining production as the gold price is hitting record levels. He also explains how the junior gold explorers are confronting a similar dilemma-fewer legitimate exploration properties with the real potential to host a major economic deposit. The rare micro-cap company that discovers a meaningful gold deposit is immediately in the sights of the cash-rich gold mining companies in need of new reserves. More importantly, anyone owning these junior companies, a few of whom are mentioned later, stands to make a substantial profit.
Exploration Success Comes from Being in the Right Place
Geologic success can only come about if a company is exploring in the right geologic terrain-a terrain that is capable of hosting a major deposit. This is, of course, easier said than done, and it is critical that the speculator in this sector be able to recognize the difference between a legitimate play and a questionable story.
Unfortunately for the speculator, Mother Nature has been very generous and supportive to the exploration sector. She has scattered gold, copper and silver anomalies all over the world, then hidden what lies beneath them under gravel and jungle. She has then left the elucidation of what lies below the surface to a discipline that is best described as art informed by science: geology. Geology and minerals exploration are not exact sciences. Minerals exploration is not accomplished through the careful mixing of measured quantities at a sterile laboratory or by complex mathematical calculations done on a computer. It is done by geologists working in the frozen wastelands and barren deserts of countries that most of us didn't know existed 10 years ago. They are invariably dealing with a limited data set and projecting that information into the third and most important dimension, depth. Testing that dimension requires drilling, an expensive endeavor that usually provides more questions than answers.
Success for the speculator therefore depends on 1) investing in management that is intelligent, honest, and financially committed and 2) properly assessing a property's potential to host a major deposit as early as possible. The "Life cycle of a junior explorer" graph presented below (Fig. 1) illustrates the normal evolution of a successful discovery from startup to production. The time to buy is when you find the right management team exploring in the right place-at the right price, of course.
(Fig. 1- Life of a junior mining share)
Profiting Comes from Selling at the Right Time
Knowing when to sell becomes a more complex issue after the initial success: you have to know what the mineral deposit could actually be worth. To do so early on requires a realistic estimate of the probable mining, processing and capital costs, plus, metallurgical recovery, strip ratio and local infrastructure. Tax rates, royalties, permitting, and social and political issues all have to be factored in as well. Ultimately, your sell price should be dependent on a rough net present valuation (NPV) estimate of the deposit the junior company has discovered, or at least appears to have discovered. That basic knowledge provides the edge that allows an investor to sell a stock when other less informed speculators are still buying.
Endret 28.11.2010 12:28 av OldNick
|Gold Mines and Discoveries are in Short Supply
Major gold mining companies are facing a big problem. They are unable to find and develop enough ounces to keep up with demand, for the simple fact that economic gold deposits are extremely rare. The chart below (Fig. 2) of global gold mine production during the past 30 years demonstrates this fact. Production shows a very simple trend: it rose until about 2000 and has fallen since then. This reduced production occurred even as the price of gold has increased nearly 400% in the past 10 years. This incongruity tells us something fundamental-there's a problem.
(Fig. 2- Global gold mine production 1980 to 2009)
From 1980 to about 1992, production from South Africa, North America and Australia increased dramatically. Since then it has been falling just as dramatically. Production in the rest of the world (Rest of World) picked up at about the same time production dropped in the established mining districts, and has been filling the gap in production since then. The reasons for the early increase in production from South Africa, North America and Australia, and the later increase in the rest of world are due to factors that are not likely to be repeated. This has important implications for major gold mining companies, exploration companies and ultimately us here at Exploration Insights.
There are three main reasons why gold production increased up to 2000, despite declining gold prices.
The first is the advent of new mining and processing technologies that made previously uneconomic low-grade deposits economic. This was mostly a result of heap-leach technology and bulk-mining methods. This meant mining companies could now scrape up large areas of low-grade mineralization and sprinkle a cheap solution of cyanide on the rock to recover the gold. This primarily worked on near-surface oxidized deposits in relatively dry climates.
The second is that vast regions of the world that had previously been closed for various reasons were opened up to exploration. These new areas include much of Latin America, Africa and the former Soviet Union. I was part of that movement; we were able to walk onto obvious deposits with new eyes and rapidly drill out those resources. It also became markedly easier to get into these areas, so we were able to go deeper into the jungles and deserts.
The third is that geologists had a whole slew of new exploration tools with which to scan the earth. These include satellite imagery, geophysics and more sensitive chemical tools.
The net result was that new technologies kept old deposits going longer and made previously uneconomic ones viable, thereby ramping up production into the early '90s. New deposits in previously unexplored and off-limits areas kept that production going until about 2000. All well and good, but as the image below shows (Fig. 3), the industry is not finding as many new deposits as they need to in order to maintain current production levels. And, although we can expect incremental technological improvements in processing, mining and exploration, there is nothing revolutionary on the horizon.
(Fig. 3- Global gold discoveries by size. After McKeith, Schodde, and Baltis, 2010)
This is a worrisome slide for major gold producers-they are unable to sustain themselves. For the most part they are surviving via old deposits that are running out of ore and newer deposits that are quickly headed into the "old" deposit category. Reserves from these aging deposits are not being replaced by new discoveries. Producers' problems are further exacerbated by rising exploration and development costs, plus the significant time it now takes to permit and finance a new deposit, if they are able to at all-a subject for another day.
Endret 28.11.2010 12:29 av OldNick
|Everything I have said up to now is good news for the junior explorers and for those of us speculating in this sector. If a company can make an economic discovery, there are ready buyers willing and able to pay a significant premium for something they want and need.
Now for the Bad News: It Ain't Easy. Consider this Next Diagram
(Fig. 4- Schematic diagram of geologic models, environments, and types of deposits associated with subduction related magmatic arcs; after Corbett)
This very complex schematic diagram, a small cross section through the earth's surface, illustrates all of the deposit types and settings associated with subduction related magmatic mineral systems: essentially the Pacific Ring of Fire and some zones running up through Central Europe and Eurasia. With each of these individual settings comes a characteristic mineral and alteration assemblage that changes with distance from the hydrothermal source. This "zoning" reflects and is a result of different chemical, pressure and temperature environments. On top of those primary factors we have to overlay the structural setting and rock type, either of which can be the make-or-break feature for the formation of an economic mineral deposit. An economic mineral deposit results from the unique combination of all of these features, a combination that rarely occurs in nature.
Although nearly every intrusive magma body (the hatched bodies in the diagram) will have some of the right stuff, I would estimate that 90% of these mineral systems do not contain a geologically economic deposit-they have anomalies; the very same anomalies that keep the exploration industry in business. That "geologically economic" classification doesn't consider the added criterion that takes the mineralization into the truly economic category: it has to be near enough to the surface and recoverable to be economically viable. To those hurdles we can add political, environmental and social obstacles.
Now place the same diagram under thick jungle cover or hundreds of meters of gravel and you begin to get the sense of how hard it actually is to make a real discovery. This is why maybe less than 1% of the exploration projects out there will ever turn into an economic discovery, and nearly all the exploration companies eventually go broke.
It is also why the Exploration Insights portfolio is comprised of relatively few companies-almost everyone is looking in the wrong place. Some of the companies on our list that were, and are, clearly the right people in the right place include AuEx Ventures Inc. (TSX:XAU), Lydian International (TSX:LYD), Mirasol Resources Ltd. (TSX.V:MRZ) and Kaminak Gold Corporation (TSX.V:KAM). We recognized early on that they were run by intelligent and committed people and just as importantly, they were exploring in the right place. That is really all it takes, plus a bit of luck.
If, for example, you are a company exploring for gold, you have to know where you are, and, more importantly, where you are not in these geologic models. If you are an investor in said company, you had better know too. It means all the difference between making a fortune on what the market has presented you-a sweet spot where the major miners need new deposits and can afford to pay top dollar for discoveries-and missing a real opportunity.
Economic Geologist and Author
Brent Cook brings more than 25 years of experience to his role as a geologist, consultant and investment adviser. His knowledge spans all areas of the mining business from the conceptual stage through to detailed technical and financial modeling related to mine development and production. His hallmarks include applying rigorous factual analysis to the projects and companies he examines, and augmenting his analysis with on-site field evaluations. He has worked in more than 60 countries on virtually every mineral deposit type. Brent's weekly Exploration Insightsn
|Et av problemene med majors, er at de har fått problemer med oppkjøp pga. en gryende nasjonalistisk og proteksjonistisk politikk i ressursrike land, ikke bare i u-land men også i i-land som Canada.
Som denne artikkelen illustrerer med Globe's analyse av BHP's mislykkede bud på Canadiske Potash Corp.
Protectionist sentiment dogs BHP
Andy Hoffman - Asia-Pacific Reporter, Perth, Australia
Nov. 16, 2010
A surge of global protectionism has hamstrung the world's biggest mining company, but BHP says it has no plans to retreat from the pursuit of top-tier resource assets.
During the brief tenure of chief executive officer Marius Kloppers, BHP has attempted to seal three blockbuster multibillion-dollar deals in the past two years. Every one of them has died.
BHP chairman Jac Nasser blames the company's dismal M&A record on a rising tide of protectionist sentiment across the globe that has emerged in response to the global financial crisis.
"The world is changing, whether you want to call it protectionism or nationalism," Mr. Nasser told reporters after the company's annual general meeting in Perth. "But there is certainly a trend towards a more difficult process when you're looking at larger cross-border transactions."
The economic downturn has heightened regulatory scrutiny for major acquisitions and contributed to the string of failed deals attempted by the Australian mining giant. Amid threats of a global currency war, an increase in protectionist sentiment and the subsequent decrease in foreign direct investment could add to the world's economic challenges.
Under the guidance of Mr. Kloppers, BHP has spent $875-million (U.S.) in the past two years on the pursuit of three major deals that it failed to close.
This week, BHP killed its hostile bid for Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan Inc., 11 days after Ottawa ruled that the proposed $38.6-billion hostile takeover would not be a "net benefit" to Canada.
BHP abandoned the bid after the government demanded it explicitly commit to building its own early stage potash development project in Saskatchewan - an estimated $10-billion investment decision that BHP was unprepared to make at such an early stage of development. Ottawa also wanted BHP to commit to selling its potash production through the Canpotex marketing arm "indefinitely," according to sources close to BHP.
The Potash rejection followed the European Union's decision to block a proposed combination of BHP's iron ore mining assets with those of U.K. rival Rio Tinto PLC. Before that, BHP abandoned a full takeover bid for Rio Tinto at the height of the economic downturn.
"It is a natural reaction that governments and society will have when things are difficult," said Mr. Nasser, adding that he hopes the rise in protectionist sentiment will prove to be a short-term issue rather than a "long-term structural shift."
Critics now say that BHP, the sixth-largest company in the world with a market value approaching $250-billion, may have become too big to execute its strategy of acquiring top-tier resource assets as governments and regulators push back against major mergers and takeovers.
Mr. Nasser suggested that had BHP attempted to buy Potash or execute the iron ore joint venture with Rio Tinto several years ago, "it would have been a different process."
But the BHP chairman dismissed reports that it will now refashion its acquisitions toward smaller, more manageable targets.
"We're not about to change from transactions that potentially involve tier-one assets ... to go after second-tier, lower-quality acquisitions," Mr. Nasser told shareholders. "Don't look to us to be chasing smaller acquisitions of lower quality."
Speculation is now rampant that BHP may set its sights closer to home on Woodside Petroleum Ltd., which is Australia's larg
Endret 28.11.2010 12:46 av OldNick
|Rio Tinto - Investorseminar 26 Nov. 2010
Endret 01.12.2010 07:38 av tas1
|Copper Stockpiles Slumping Makes Metal a Goldman Pick
By Chanyaporn Chanjaroen (Bloomberg)
Dec. 6, 2010
The biggest slump in copper inventories in six years is compounding shortages as prices head toward record highs, making the metal a top pick for Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Morgan Stanley.
Demand will outpace supply by 367,500 metric tons next year, enough for wires, pipes and appliances in about 1.8 million U.S. homes, according to the median forecast of 12 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. Stockpiles may drop to an all- time low of less than one week's usage, said Michael Widmer, a London-based metals analyst at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Global exchange inventories have dropped 22 percent this year, heading for the largest slide since 2004, data compiled by Bloomberg show.
Prices advanced 35 percent since June 30 even as the International Monetary Fund predicted slower world growth, U.S. unemployment stuck near its highest level in more than a quarter century and China, which uses two in every five tons of copper, curbed lending and raised interest rates. Now, banks from Credit Suisse Group to Barclays Capital are predicting higher prices, with the median in the Bloomberg survey at a record average of $8,542 a ton for 2011, 15 percent more than this year.
Demand for the metal, used in everything from smart phones to brake pads, will increase 4.2 percent next year, compared with a 2.6 percent gain in production, Barclays Capital said in a report Nov. 11. Supplies fell 363,000 tons short of demand in the first eight months of this year, the Lisbon-based International Copper Study Group said in a report Nov. 23.
Mining companies have failed to keep pace with demand because new reserves are getting harder to find and the quality of ore is declining, meaning less metal is extracted from each ton of earth. Average grades declined to about 1.1 percent this year from 1.6 percent in 1990, according to Guildford, England- based researcher Brook Hunt, a Wood Mackenzie company.
Production at Escondida, the world's largest copper mine, will drop as much as 10 percent in the 12 months ending in June because of lower grades, Melbourne-based BHP Billiton, the largest shareholder, said in a statement Aug. 25.
Freeport-McMoRan, the largest listed producer, said Oct. 21 that its copper sales from North America would drop to 1.1 billion pounds this year from 1.2 billion pounds in 2009. Sales from Indonesia will probably decline to 1.2 billion pounds from 1.4 billion, the Phoenix-based company said.
"The major copper reserves that are being produced today come from 100 year-old mines, with few exceptions," Freeport Chairman James R. Moffett said in a conference call on Nov. 17.
Analysts' forecasts for shortages may not yet be reflected in futures markets. Copper for delivery in December 2011 traded at $8,555 on Dec. 3 on the LME, 1.9 percent below than the benchmark contract for delivery in three months.
Goldman predicts prices of $11,000 by then and buying the December 2011 contract is one of its seven recommendations in commodities, according to a report Dec. 1.
The forecast gains could be stunted by slowing growth. Prices slumped 7.7 percent in three days last month on concern China's steps to control inflation may curb demand for metals and that Ireland would need a banking bailout.
Prices now may also be skewed by who owns metal. One unidentified company held 50 percent to 79 percent of the LME's deliverable stockpiles as of Dec. 1, bourse data show. Buyers that day paid the largest premium in two years for immediate supply, relative to the three-month contract. Deliverable inventories total 324,375 tons, the exchange said Dec. 6.
Record prices could encourage users to substitute cheaper materials. Global consumption may be 100,000 tons less than
Endret 07.12.2010 20:34 av OldNick
Substitution may take out 3 percent of demand this year and next, according to London-based Rio Tinto Group. New uses in electric and hybrid cars should make up for some of that, Andrew Harding, chief executive officer of Rio's copper business, said Nov. 26. The average North American car contains about 23 kilograms (51 pounds), while an electric car uses about 75 kilograms, he said.
The tripling of prices since December 2008 is also spurring use of scrap metal, alleviating shortages signaled by this year's 22 percent drop in stockpiles monitored by exchanges in London, Shanghai and New York. The supply of metal from wires and electronic goods jumped 25 percent in the first eight months, the International Copper Study Group reported in November.
The biggest threats to higher prices are China tightening its monetary policy and a worsening European debt crisis, said Bank of America Merrill Lynch's Widmer, whose March prediction for this year's average price is accurate to within 2 percent.
China may raise bank reserve requirements to counter capital inflows and a possible jump in lending at the start of 2011, Li Daokui, an adviser to the central bank, said Dec. 3. The bank pushed the one-year lending rate to 5.56 percent in October, the first increase since 2007.
Still, manufacturing grew at a faster pace for a fourth straight month in November, according to the nation's logistics federation. China's economy will expand 9 percent in 2011, compared with 10 percent this year, according to the median of 18 economists surveyed by Bloomberg. That would still be more than three times the speed of the U.S., the second-biggest copper user, the survey shows.
Consumption in China, India, Brazil and the Middle East will expand at an average annual rate of 7 percent per capita through 2015, according to Barclays Capital.
"Where is all the new copper going to come from?" said Tom Patton, chief executive officer of Quaterra Resources Inc., a Vancouver-based company developing mines in North America. "New deposits take 10 to 15 years to start up."
Aurubis AG, Europe's largest smelter, is also predicting higher demand next year.
"We presently see a very positive order flow for next year," Bernd Drouven, chief executive officer of the Hamburg- based company, said by e-mail. "Every copper price dip is recognized by customers as an opportunity for new orders."
Demand from Asia helped Santiago-based Codelco, the biggest producer, increase the surcharge on sales to China next year by 35 percent, more than the 23 percent increase for Europe, industry officials said last month. Buyers pay the fee on top of the price of LME copper for immediate delivery.
The gain is driving shares of mining companies. Freeport- McMoRan climbed 38 percent in New York trading this year, beating the 9.7 percent gain the S&P 500 Index.
Demand may also be boosted if JPMorgan, BlackRock Inc. and ETF Securities Ltd. start exchange-traded products backed by the metal. Such funds could hold as much as 250,000 tons, Aurubis said in a report Nov. 15. Similar products backed by gold accumulated 2,098 tons since they started in 2003, equal to nine years of U.S. mine output.
"The real story is metals and we've dubbed this the metals decade," Mari Kooi, chief executive officer of Wolf Asset Management International LLC, said at the Bloomberg Link Hedge Fund and Investor Briefing in New York on Dec. 2. "What we have is a set up of shortages in the metals."
Goldman ser følgende ved slutten av 2011:
Olje: $105 pr fat
Gull: $1690 pr oz
Goldman Sachs 2011 Forecast: Stocks, Gold, Oil Higher
Dec. 6, 2010
Endret 07.12.2010 20:54 av OldNick
|Tight Supply/Demand Picture Leaves Analysts, Investors Bullish On Copper
Allen Sykora, Of Kitco News (http://www.kitco.com/)
Dec. 17, 2010
(Kitco News) - Copper's supply/demand picture may become so tight that many analysts and institutional investors say it is one of the commodities on which they are the most bullish for 2011.
Copper has already staged an impressive rally from the commodity-wide sell-off that occurred when the global financial crisis hit in 2008. While Western economies were weak, copper demand remained strong in emerging economies such as China, the world's largest consumer of the metal. Whenever recovery picks up in the West, demand should rise further.
Meanwhile, analysts say, mining companies will not be able to ramp up output fast enough to keep up with demand, leaving a global supply/demand deficit for 2011.
"It's our top commodity pick for next year," said Bart Melek, global commodity strategist with BMO Capital Markets.
The same was true for many institutional investors surveyed by Barclays Capital during an investor conference in December. More than 300 participants were asked to rate which commodity or sector will perform best in 2011, and copper got the highest rating with 26%, followed by grains at 23% and crude oil at 19%.
Analysts have been releasing commodity forecasts for 2011 this month, and Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Barclays Capital are among those listing copper as one of the markets they expect to fare best.
"We expect to see pretty tight market conditions for copper next year," Melek said. "The crux of the story is that we are expecting supply to be outstripped by demand growth."
BMO projects a 2011 copper deficit of around 380,000 metric tons. Standard Bank analyst Leon Westgate looks for a deficit of 385,000 metric tons, widening to 562,000 in 2012.
"I think the real tightness in the market is going to come in 2012," Westgate said. "While I'm bullish next year, I'm super bullish for 2012."
BNP Paribas analyst Stephen Briggs looks for a supply deficit of 200,000 metric tons this year, widening to 500,000 in 2011.
Analysts often measure tightness by looking at the how many weeks current inventories will last, based on global consumption. For 2011, this is likely to fall to around 2.2 weeks, comparable to the 2006-2008 period, Westgate said. But then in 2012, he looks for a further drop to 0.7 week.
A recent Morgan Stanley report said the stocks-to-consumption ratio fell to 3.4 weeks at the end of the third quarter. This was a "remarkable" given below-par growth in developed nations, plus risks to emerging-market growth arising from inflation, Morgan Stanley said.
There is a wide range of price forecasts. Morgan Stanley looks for average of $7,900 a metric ton in 2011, up from $7,300 for 2010 although down from current levels. VM Group lists an average of $8,833 but a three-month target of $9,100 and a 12-month target of $8,500. VM Group looks for prices to top $10,000, but with volatility and potential for a correction if Chinese authorities are aggressive reining in money supply.
Citi also expects copper to hit $10,000 in the next to 12 months. Barclays looks for copper average $9,950 in the third quarter alone. Goldman Sachs looks for LME copper to hit $11,000 a ton in 12 months.
Global Recovery Driving Demand While Constraints Limit Supply
Copper demand should be driven by a continuing global economic recovery, Melek said. In particular, an improving auto sector likely will consume more copper, while China will also need more metal to keep building its power and other infrastructure.
Also, there is potential for physically exchange-traded funds in base metals to take still more copper off of the market. ETF Securities launched an ETF on Dec. 10, and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and BlackRock Asset Management International are also looking to launch
Endret 21.12.2010 00:31 av OldNick
Some analysts wonder if base-metals ETFs will become as popular as those in precious metals.
"We have our doubts about the attractiveness of these investment products, but so tight is the copper market likely to become that even modest tonnages risk material being bid away from consumers," Briggs said.
Meanwhile, a number of factors are limiting the ability of mining companies to hike production.
For starters, there were relatively few mine cutbacks in 2008-09, meaning little in the way of restarts, Briggs said. Where cutbacks did occur, miners have been slow to reverse them, he said.
Ore grades are declining at aging mines, Briggs and Melek said. For instance, in late summer, controlling owner BHP Billiton reported that production at the Chile's Escondida mine, the largest in the world, will fall as much as 10% by the middle of next year due to lower ore grades.
There have been limited major discoveries and developments in recent years, analysts said. Furthermore, some of the potential new operations are in regions of the world with high geopolitical risk, which makes companies cautious about investment, Melek said.
"The difference in copper, compared to a lot of other commodities, is the supply side really is extraordinarily tight," said Kevin Norrish, managing director of commodities research. "The problem for copper is there just aren't lots of large projects out there in the way that perhaps there were 10 or 15 years ago. It's becoming very difficult to grow supply."
Prices above $10,000 could make some projects feasible, whereas maybe they would not be at $7,000 or $8,000, Norrish said. "But it will take time to get those up and running," he said.
Analysts with Goldman Sachs, in a research report, said base metals such as copper are even closer to a "structural bull market" than oil because of supply issues. In the case of crude, declining inventories and rising prices may be followed by OPEC producing from spare capacity. But for many base metals, producers are already at full capacity and existing inventories are the only "spare," Goldman said.
In fact, Goldman said, nearly all exchange inventories may be exhausted over the course of 2011, forcing the market into demand rationing.
"We are expecting copper stocks to fall to the lowest that they've ever been," Norrish said.
|Er det noen her som har investert i Nordic Mining?
|Kommende gruveeventyr i gammel gruvekommune : http://www.an.no/indresalten/article5491916.ece
|EU har fått utarbeidet en analyse av ressurs situasjonen for kritiske materialer for nye energiteknologier.
Announcement: New report on Critical Metals in Strategic Energy Technologies
Rapport (164s. PDF)
Due to the rapid growth in demand for certain materials, compounded by political risks associated with the geographical concentration of the supply of them, a shortage of these materials could be a potential bottleneck to the deployment of low carbon energy technologies.
In order to assess whether such shortages could jeopardise the objectives of the EU's Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET Plan), an improved understanding of these risks is vital.
In particular, this report examines the use of metals in the six low carbon energy technologies of SET Plan, namely:
- carbon capture and storage (CCS) and
- electricity grids.
The study look at the average annual demand for each metal for the deployment of the technologies in Europe between 2020 and 2030.
The demand of each metal is compared to the respective global production volume in 2010. This ratio (expressed as a percentage) allows comparing the relative stress that the deployment of the six technologies in Europe is expected to create on the global supplies for these different metals.
The study identifies 14 metals for which the deployment of the six technologies will require 1% or more (and in some cases, much more) of current world supply per annum between 2020 and 2030.
These 14 metals, in order of decreasing demand, are
- niobium and
The metals are examined further in terms of the risks of meeting the anticipated demand by analysing in detail the likelihood of rapid future global demand growth, limitations to expanding supply in the short to medium term, and the concentration of supply and political risks associated with key suppliers.
The report pinpoints 5 of the 14 metals to be at high risk, namely:
- the rare earth metals neodymium and dysprosium,
- and the by products from the processing of other metals) indium, tellurium and gallium.
The report explores a set of potential mitigation strategies, ranging from expanding European output, increasing recycling and reuse to reducing waste and finding substitutes for these metals in their main applications. A number of recommendations are provided.
|Ernst & Young: Bulk of post-crisis equity to flow to junior miners
at Mines and Money conference, London
by Michelle Madsen
Dec. 6, 2011
Junior miners will be in line for the bulk of equity available to mining companies when the economic crisis finally eases, according to Ernst & Young. "We expect to see a greater proportion of equity reach the pre-production end of the market," Ernst and Young's global mining and metals advisory services leader Lee Downham told delegates at the Mines and Money conference in London on December 6.
Fundraising has become increasingly difficult for small cap miners, Downham said, highlighting the low levels of initial public offering (IPO) activity in 2011 after Glencore listed on the London Stock Exchange in May.
"Glencore was clearly the standout IPO of the year," he said. "It would be interesting to see if all that money would have gone to other miners if Glencore had not listed."
Despite the severity of the European sovereign debt crisis and widespread economic uncertainty across the globe, Downham said equity would not be needed by the mining majors in the same way it was in 2009, after the financial crisis of the preceding year.
"We wouldn't expect the same decline as we saw in 2009," said Downham. "I'm not suggesting we'll enter another financial crisis, but it's reassuring to see that [...] the majors Vale, BHP, Rio Tinto [and] Xstrata won't need to call for equity should we suffer a decline in economic conditions."
Engaging is 'key to surviving resource nationalism'
at Mines and Money conference, London
Dec. 6, 2011
London - The key to navigating the pitfalls associated with resource nationalism in resource-rich countries is to forge relationships and engage with governments and state mining companies, according to Brian Menell, founder of South African mining and industrial conglomerate Anglovaal Group.
"We need to engage not so much through persuasion as to offer and provide resources and experience," Menell said at the Mines and Money conference in London on December 6.
"Unfortunately or fortunately, the degree to which we as mining companies derive benefits is through driving personal relationships. We need to take a step back and focus more time and effort on that," he said.
Legislation arising from increasing resource nationalism - for example, in developed economies such as those of Canada and Australia - may hold potential benefits as well as burdens for mining companies, he added.
The phenomenon is growing globally, and is likely to continue to do so in the long term, as democratisation spreads and governments look to derive value from the mining industry in increasingly uncertain economic times.
Opportunities to be exploited
In countries such as Zambia, Peru and Guinea, governments have introduced higher levels of taxation and imposed royalty requirements on mines in response to short-term fiscal stress, according to Menell - but this may present opportunities that can be exploited, he added.
"We are seeing increasingly assertive implementation of use-it-or-lose-it-type regulations. This is a constructive response to the dominance of short-term opportunistic investors," he said. "If these regulations are correctly and fairly administrated, I believe they are entirely positive for the industry as a whole, and should be encouraged."
There are, however, still hurdles to be overcome, he added, as countries as diverse as Canada, Venezuela and Russia are continuing to introduce legislation aimed at increasing local ownership of mining assets.
"Other than showing we are good and obedient corporate citizens, there's not much mining companies can do [about this]," Menell said.
"There are increasing demands across the mining industry to grow local beneficiation - for example, banning exports of unsmelted tin in Indonesia, which has created a local smelting industry," he said.
"This may b
|U.S. Department of Energy - Critical Materials Strategy
This report examines the role of rare earth metals and other materials in the clean energy economy. It was prepared by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) based on data collected and research performed during 2010.
Report 2010 (PDF)
Department of Energy Releases its 2011 Critical Materials Strategy
Dec. 22, 2011
The 2011 Critical Materials Strategy is DOE's second report on this topic and provides an update to last year's analysis. Using a methodology adapted from the National Academy of Sciences, the report includes criticality assessments for 16 elements based on their importance to clean energy and supply risk. The report is the product of extensive research and data collection by the Department over the last twelve months.
Report 2011 (PDF)
Analytikerestimater for internasjonale gruveselskap
Bill Matlack, Kitco, 29des2011
Endret 02.01.2012 19:18 av OldNick
|Quote: "Put simply, many businesses now recognise that we are living beyond the planet's means.
Rare Earth Metals Scarcity: A 'Ticking Time Bomb' for the World?, Asks PwC
PwC press release
Seven core manufacturing industries could be seriously affected by a shortage of minerals and metals, which could disrupt entire supply chains and economies, according to new PwC research.
PwC surveyed some of the largest manufacturing businesses across manufacturing, chemicals, automotive, energy/renewable energy, aviation, metals, infrastructure and high-tech hardware to see what impact such a scarcity would have, and where, over the next five years.
Of these, business leaders in automotive, chemicals, and energy sectors fear they will be hit hardest according to ,b.PwC's Minerals and metals scarcity in manufacturing: A 'ticking time bomb', report.
PwC's global sustainability leader, Malcolm Preston, said:
"Put simply, many businesses now recognise that we are living beyond the planet's means. New business models will be fundamental to the ability to respond appropriately to the risks and opportunities posed by the scarcity of minerals and metals."
The report's main author, Hans Schoolderman of PwC Netherlands, added:
"The world's growing population, an increase in GDP levels and changing lifestyles are causing consumption levels to rise globally - creating a higher and higher demand for resources. Governments and companies should all be aware of the scope, importance and urgency of the scarcity of both renewable and non-renewable natural resources: energy, water, land and minerals."
Among the minerals & metals on the 'critical' list are:
* Beryllium: used as a lightweight component in military equipment and in the aerospace industry. it is used in high-speed aircraft, missiles, space vehicles and communication satellites.
* Cobalt: a material used in industrial manufacturing. Used in jet turbine engines and automotive rechargeable batteries.
* Tantalum: used in mobile phones, computers and automotive electronics
* Flurospar: used in construction, cement, glass, iron and steel castings.
* Lithium: used in wind turbines and lithium-ion batteries in hybrid cars
Elsewhere in the survey, 77% of major manufacturing companies consider minerals and metals scarcity as an important issue for their business, but are concerned that only 39% of their customers do. Chemicals and energy and utilities sectors believe they will be severely impacted until 2016 with the percentage of chemical businesses that expect to be affected by this scarcity will TRIPLE over the next five years.
Endret 04.01.2012 21:06 av OldNick
|Instability of supply
The risk of scarcity across all sectors is expected to rise significantly, leading to supply instability and potential disruptions in the next five years, but this will also create opportunities for competitive advantage, the report says. The survey shows that whilst 80% of automotive respondents are currently worried about reserves running out, only 33% in aviation are, for example.
Renewable energy (78%), automotive (64%) and energy & utilities (57%) are all currently experiencing instability of supply. Aviation, high tech and infrastructure sectors are also expecting to experience high rises in supply disruption from now to 2016.
When asked about other primary concerns around scarcity overall, 84% cited an increase in demand, 78% said it was geopolitics, and 72% said extraction shortage. The report also indicated that European companies were better prepared with policies and programmes in place to mitigate risks.
PwC's global sustainability leader, Malcolm Preston, said:
"With the need for new business models, a key challenge for business is how to draw the line between collaboration and competitive advantage. This is where strategic decision making meets sustainability. Getting this right will define the winners and losers of the future."
A 'top 10' checklist for businesses on how to identify and prevent resource scarcity is in the report which also includes advice around creating risk assessments for three main areas, geopolitical, economic and physical.
Notes to Editor
69 executives from seven different industries, across three continents, Asia Pacific, the Americas and Europe were surveyed. The majority of companies are key players globally, with revenues of over $10 billion.
PwC Press statement (PDF)
Report 'Minerals and metals scarcity in manufacturing: the ticking time bomb' (PDF)
|Leder i Metal Bulletin Weekly 9-13 jan
China's shift to two-tier quota system shows how much it values heavy rare earths
China's recent decision to distinguish between light and heavy rare earths in its export quotas is of greater long-term significance than the headline increase in quota volumes for 2012.
China's ministry of commerce set the overall quota for the first half at 24,904 tonnes, and - for the first time - issued provisional guidance for full-year allocations of 31,130 tonnes, up 3% from last year, easing any immediate concerns about supply.
Under the new two-tier system, full-year heavy rare earth exports are likely to total about 4,050 tonnes, or 13% of the total.
The ministry's decision last month to increase overall export volumes was made to "guarantee international market demand and keep rare earth supplies basically stable".
This concession to the international market was interpreted by some as a victory for national governments, which have been pressing China to relax its export restrictions over recent months.
But the new two-tier system may bring less relief to end-users of heavy rare earths, particularly over the longer term.
China sets a precedent for greater control...
While demand is currently slack, the ministry of commerce has now set a precedent to tweak exports of these scarcer and more valuable rare earths in a more targeted fashion, in a move that may hurt global buyers as economies recover and China's domestic demand rises.
Over the longer term, China's burgeoning domestic demand for heavy rare earths may progressively erode supply to the international market, particularly as the country forges ahead with large-scale green energy projects as demanded by its latest five-year plan.
"I believe the heavy rare earth quota is enough, but it may not be. If it is not enough, I am afraid that Japanese magnet producers, such as Showa Denko and Hitachi, will be forced to produce magnet alloys and magnets in China," an analyst in Japan told Metal Bulletin last week.
...so it can seek value-added advantages
Industry analysts have often cited China's ambition to manufacture more value-added rare earth products as one of the driving forces behind its decision to limit rare earth supply outside the country.
Technological joint ventures with Japanese magnet makers and the like may be delayed while international supply is sufficient and global demand remains slack.
Nevertheless, the move to a new two-tier system should clearly signal that China, like the rest of the world, views its heavy rare earths as material of particular strategic importance.
In the medium term, new mining output outside of China will create a healthy surplus of light rare earths, but China will still be the world's largest producer of heavy rare earths.
The new two-tier quota system will only strengthen its ability to manage the supply, and price, of these critical metals in years ahead.
Endret 13.01.2012 15:23 av OldNick
|Junior har ikke vært stedet å være i det siste.
Vil det bli bedre fremover?
Sikkert ikke så ille, men ingen oppgang i sikte for dem ennå, bort fra som alltid - spesielle case, som har en gruveforelkomst med medverdier som skal komme frem i lyset fremover.
Junior miners lost nearly a third of their value in Q2, E&Y says
Aug. 7, 2012
Junior miners listed on London's Alternative Investment Market (AIM) lost 31% of their value in the second quarter of 2012, advisory firm Ernst and Young (E&Y) has said.
The year so far has been "incredibly tough" for financing within the junior mining sector, E&Y said, and the decline also reflects the sector's lacklustre performance in the first quarter.
The 31% decline in the firm's Mining Eye index over the three months ended June 30 was more than double the losses suffered by the AIM all-share index.
|Mining M&A activity down in Q2 - PwC
Aug. 9, 2012
The volume and values of merger and acquisition deals dropped during the second quarter of 2012, following the downward trend in metals prices, PricewaterhouseCoopers' (PwC) metals team said in a report.
There were 35 deals during the period, valued at a total of $18.55 billion, PwC said in its second quarter mining and metals M&A analysis. Nearly half of these were in China.
Asia and Oceania continued to drive local transaction value and volume during the first half of the year, they added.
"This region could continue to drive local deal activity in 2012, given that China is both the world's largest steel producer and its largest steel consumer," PwC said.
India has also had high levels of activity so far this year, including four local transactions and one cross-border deal, the team said.
"We should also note that Asia's emerging markets are relatively fragmented, which contributes to consolidation within the region," they added.
Western Europe, however, did not generate any deals with a value of $50 million or more during the three months ended June 30.
The continent was the primary driver for outbound deals during the first half, with three deals valued at a total of $2.3 billion, but these deals all happened in the first quarter.
In North America there were six local deals in the first six months of the year, and three of these were in the second quarter, valued at a total of $1 billion.
"It is likely that North American activity has been constrained recently for a number of reasons, including the relative maturity of the industry in the region and the economic uncertainty," PwC said.
"However, the dollar has been rising in value recently, particularly against the euro. If this improvement continues, US acquirers may be able to pursue relatively cheap acquisitions in the near future."
Commodities pricing is still a concern, the team said, as prices for base metals are expected to keep falling for the rest of 2012.
"If current levels of M&A activity continue through the end of 2012, the sector could experience a year-over-year decline of nearly 20% in deal value," PwC said.
"Unless and until prices and demand improve, the deal environment is likely to remain constrained."
Moreover, the outlook for the global economy has continued to deteriorate, particularly in the eurozone and the US, and the emerging markets are also seeing slower growth, they added.
Over the past year, meanwhile, liquidity has remained strong and there has been an increase in cash balances, while debt-to-equity levels have fallen.
"Normally, this augurs well for future deals, because it indicates that potential acquirers are becoming better capitalised over the long term," PwC said.
"However, given the current environment, it appears that metals players are waiting to see an improvement in pricing, demand, or both."
European activity has been much quieter overall, they added, and has been held back by the economic uncertainty in the UK and the eurozone, as well as the unresolved sovereign debt problems across the continent.
Based on the negative deal environment in the second quarter, the outlook for the near term continues to be uncertain, they said.
"A number of issues may cause investors to postpone deals as they wait for conditions to improve," PwC said.
This includes the falling metals prices on the London Metal Exchange, which have yet to return to higher levels seen at the beginning of the year.
"The average London Metal Exchange aluminium cash price for June fell almost 6%, and since January the monthly average prices are down more than 12%," the metals team said.
|NGU har oppdatert sin database over viktige metall-forekomster i Norge
Metallmilliarder i bakken
Metallene i bakken i godt dokumenterte forekomster i Norge er verdsatt til 1388 milliarder kroner
Gudmund Løvø, NGU
26. september 2012
Beregningene er basert på kjente metallforekomster av nasjonal betydning og knyttet til prisene på verdens metallbørser i april 2012.
Det har lenge vært et ønske fra myndigheter på flere nivå om en mer nøyaktig vurdering av verdien på norske mineralforekomster. Nå foreligger rapporten fra Norges geologiske undersøkelse (NGU).
NGU-rapporten har tatt for seg kjente metallforekomster i Norge og beregnet verdien "in situ", altså der de ligger i berget.
Undersøkelsene har tatt hensyn til kvalitet og mengde av viktige forekomster med økonomisk interessante metaller. Beregningene er basert på prisene ved verdens metallbørser i april i år.
Oversikten viser at jern- og titanmalmer alene har en verdi på 1224 milliarder kroner med Sydvaranger Gruve og Rana Gruber som norske malmlokomotiv.
Forekomster av kobber knyttet til edelt metall er beregnet til 25 milliarder kroner. Her ligger de største kjente verdiene i Nussir-forekomsten i Kvalsund kommune i Finnmark, i tillegg til kobber-gull-mineraliseringen i Biddjovagge i Kautokeino.
Basemetaller, som blant annet kobber, sink, bly og nikkel, er prisvurdert til 117 milliarder kroner, spredt over en lang rekke forekomster i Norge.
En gruppe spesialmetaller; niob, cerium, lantan, yttrium, neodym og beryllium, er i den nye rapporten prisfastsatt til 22 milliarder kroner.
- Vi har ikke vurdert verdien av mulige forekomster som kan finnes på større dyp i historiske malmfelt, ei heller av flere store forekomster som er kjent, men ikke godt nok dokumentert når det gjelder tonnasje og gehalter.
- Trolig er det et betydelig potensial her, sier seniorforsker Ron Boyd ved NGU.
Han påpeker at verdiene som kan realiseres i en framtidig gruvedrift i de enkelte forekomster avhenger av både driftsforhold, oppredningsteknologi og framtidige prisvariasjoner.
Boyd mener at rapporten ikke inneholder store overraskelser, men han ønsker likevel at rapporten blir revidert med jevne mellomrom for å sikre en oppdatert dokumentasjon av både kjente forekomster og nye funn. På den måten blir også virkningen av endringene i metallpriser kartlagt.
- I løpet av høsten kommer vi med en rapport om verdier av industrimineralforekomster. Det gjelder blant annet kalkstein, olivin, nefelinsyenitt, kvarts og dolomitt. Også her snakker vi om betydelige beløp, fastslår Boyd.
Uttak av byggeråstoffer som grus og pukk, utvinning av kull på Svalbard, samt natursteinproduksjon av for eksempel eksportsuksessen larvikitt, blir omtalt i andre rapporter i løpet av året.
Den norske bergindustrien solgte i fjor 94 millioner tonn mineralske råstoffer til en samlet verdi av 12,4 milliarder kroner.
Senere i høst legger vi fram tilsvarende verdivurderinger for industrimineraler, som kalkstein, olivin og kvarts, og for byggeråstoffer og naturstein.
- Tallene her er også betydelige, fastslår Boyd.
NGU-rapporten er åpen:
Boyd m.fl.: Mineral- og metallressurser i Norge: "In situ" verdi av metallforekomster av nasjonal betydning (pdf), NGU-rapport nr. 2012.048
Endret 26.09.2012 19:10 av OldNick
Her er en gruppe som har studert om det blir restriksjoner på tilgangen til ingrdiensene (fødematerialene) til stålindustrien i fremtiden.
Metal Bulleting: Assessing raw material risks (PDF)
8 Oct. 2012
A team at the Technical University of Berlin has developed a model to make more realistic assessments of raw material availability risks.
When the research sponsors, Oryx Stainless, brought the team together to discuss their results with industry and trade representatives in mid-September,
Richard Barrett accepted an invitation to participate and summarise key factors debated.
Utdrag av konklusjoen:
Oryx CFO Roland Mauss imagines that, 20 years hence, there could effectively be two markets for commodities: "One for those who have done their research, assessed their vulnerability, and then taken strategic measures to defend their production and secure access to sufficient raw materials for the future, and another for those who expose themselves to the 'last resort price' of the spot market, placing them at a competitive disadvantage."
Finkbeiner stresses that large manufacturers are also assessing their vulnerability to future raw material shortages, so it is in the interest of steel and metal producers to be well informed when their customers turn to them for indications of how the risks associated with their products compare with those for other finished materials.
Det interessante er kanskje ikke den omtalte studien, men det faktum at den er gjennomført. Ressurstilgang vil bli den store krisen i dette århundret (og videre utover), ikke klima og andre tulle-forestillinger som politikerne finner det for godt "å fore" almuen med.
Endret 12.11.2012 10:32 av OldNick
Ref.: "there could effectively be two markets for commodities: "One for those who have done their research, assessed their vulnerability, and then taken strategic measures to defend their production and secure access to sufficient raw materials for the future, and another for those who expose themselves to the 'last resort price' of the spot market, placing them at a competitive disadvantage."
Dette har vi allerede sett med REE (Rare Earth Elements), hvor Kina med sin langsiktige tilnærming har sikret seg langt over 90% av verdens produksjon, og også kontrollerer både prisene og tilgangen på de for store deler av high tech-industrien helt nødvendige elementene, mens "Vesten" og resten av verden løper etter og lurer på hva som skjedde...
China's Rare Earth Metals Monopoly Needn't Put An Electronics Stranglehold On America. Forbes 4/15/2012
"China presently produces more than 95% of all rare earth materials that are vital in the creation of a big variety of electronic technologies including lithium car batteries, solar panels, wind turbines, flat-screen television, compact fluorescent light bulbs, petroleum-to-gasoline catalytic cracking, and military defense components such as missile guidance systems. It also dominates abilities to process them.
This enables it to attract product manufactures to operate there as a condition of doing business, ration exports to maximize prices, and punish nations that don't go along with its policy interests through supply embargoes. Beijing reduced rare earth shipments by 9% in 2010 over 2009, and has recently announced plans to reduce exports by another 35%.
(Artikkelen fortsetter, og viser også til flere tiltak som forhåpentligvis skal bidra til å redusere avhengigheten av Kinas forgodtbefinnende)