News

Plus, our whisper last week on Rumble proved well-founded but don’t forget Zenith, Beament begins his goodbyes at Northern Star, Sovereign prepares for maiden rutile resource and Biswas has a crack at cryptos

The turnaround in the lithium market has been remarkable stuff, with the key battery material swept up in the global “green” investment boom in the decarbonisation of transport and energy. The resultant surge in lithium prices in the opening months of 2021 has seen last year’s beaten-up lithium stocks recapture their darling status. Pilbara (PLS) tells the tale. In the depth of despair over COVID-19 a year ago, Pilbara could be bought for 18c. It has since climbed to $1.11.

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Chalice Mining’s Julimar nickel-copper-platinum group element project outside Perth continues to get bigger (reports MiningNews).

Chalice Mining’s Julimar nickel-copper-platinum group element project outside Perth continues to get bigger (reports MiningNews). The company received 165 high-grade intersections from the seven-rig drill-out of the Gonneville Intrusion, which is now about 1.8km long by 900m wide. The drilling expanded the G4-G11 zones to the north-east and the G1-G2 zones down-dip. G4 is now 1250m long with up to 600m of dip extent, while G11 is 1200m long with up to 300m of dip extent. Both are open to the north and down-dip.

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Two weeks ago I referred to the commodity super cycle that is under way. The stock prices of most resources companies have followed commodity prices on the way up (reports analyst Ryk de Klerk from the African News Agency).

Two weeks ago I referred to the commodity super cycle that is under way. The stock prices of most resources companies have followed commodity prices on the way up (reports analyst Ryk de Klerk from the African News Agency). The big question I asked myself is where I can find value in the resources sector. My starting point was to look for stocks such as junior or emerging mining companies that are often ignored or not followed by analysts. I used the JSE-listed junior mining companies in South Africa to calculate a Junior Mining Company Index for South Africa.

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OZ Minerals says soaring coronavirus cases could have a material impact on its Brazilian copper operations, with the miner flagging the loss of output amid the “deteriorating” situation in the pandemic-wracked nation (reports The Australian).

OZ Minerals says soaring coronavirus cases could have a material impact on its Brazilian copper operations, with the miner flagging the loss of output amid the “deteriorating” situation in the pandemic-wracked nation (reports The Australian). OZ Minerals on Thursday maintained its annual production guidance of 120,000 to 145,000 tonnes of copper output for the year.

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The “almost everything boom” roared on this week, led by palladium, which hit an all-time high of $US2899 an ounce, iron ore, which cracked a 10-year price ceiling at $US186 a tonne, and gold, which took a peek at $US1800/oz

The “almost everything boom” roared on this week, led by palladium, which hit an all-time high of $US2899 an ounce, iron ore, which cracked a 10-year price ceiling at $US186 a tonne, and gold, which took a peek at $US1800/oz -- and might be there by the time you read this. Soft commodities and financial markets are also booming. Wheat is trading at a seven-year high. Timber in the U.S. is at an all-time high, as are share prices on the New York Stock Exchange.

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Plus, there is a buzz around Rumble’s impending zinc-lead assays and IGO prepares to start drilling at Boadicea’s Fraser Range plot.

The copper stocks weren’t in need of a confidence boost with the red metal continuing to trade at more than $US4.10-/lb. They got one anyway during the week when Goldman Sachs made the call that copper was necessarily on the path to an eye-watering $US6.80/lb in 2025. It was based on a familiar thematic – copper is essential to global decarbonisation and that after a couple of years of supply surplus caused by new production from mines being built now, a chronic supply deficit emerges.

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Gold tried to rise this week, with limited success, leaving the best gains to energy in its many forms,

Gold tried to rise this week, with limited success, leaving the best gains to energy in its many forms, led by oil but with lithium and other members of the battery-metal family (including copper) not far behind. Because so many Australian investors are exposed to gold it’s worth having a look at the changing dynamics of the gold market. These could put a floor under its price, which has dropped by 16% over the past nine months to latest trades at $US1738/oz.

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Copper is so crucial in electrifying the global economy that finding enough of it has become a US national security issue, according to mining magnate Robert Friedland (reports Bloomberg).

Copper is so crucial in electrifying the global economy that finding enough of it has become a US national security issue, according to mining magnate Robert Friedland (reports Bloomberg).

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