TSX posts modest dip, Feb. 15-19

The Quebrada Blanca 2 copper project in Chile. Credit: Teck Resources.

The S&P/TSX Composite Index fell 75.93 points (0.41%) to finish the Feb. 15-19 trading week at 18,384.27. The Global Base Metals Index rose 10.2% to 169.75 and the Global Mining Index gained 2.1% to 108.27. Spot gold fell US$39.70 per oz. (2.2%) to US$1,784.60 per oz., and the S&P/TSX Global Gold Index dropped 7.5% to 281.01.

Teck Resources’ Class A common shares jumped $4.01 to $32.97. The company announced its unaudited annual results for 2020 and reported an adjusted profit attributable to shareholders of $561 million or $1.05 per share and adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of $2.6 billion. It also announced that last year it met its target of 40% overall completion of its Quebrada Blanca Phase 2 copper project in Chile, one of the world’s largest undeveloped copper resources. In other news, Teck announced that commissioning is underway at its Elkview Saturated Rock Fill (SRF) expansion, which doubles the water treatment facility’s capacity to 20 million litres of water per day. The Elkview SRF has been achieving near complete removal of selenium and nitrate from up to 10 million litres of water per day since 2018 and is part of the company’s work to implement the Elk Valley Water Quality Plan.

First Quantum Minerals rose $3.88 per share to $29.08. The company reported its highest-ever copper production of 778,911 tonnes in 2020, an 11% year-on-year increase from 2019, despite the challenges it faced from the Covid-19 pandemic. All-in sustaining costs came in at US$1.63 per lb. copper. First Quantum also produced 265,112 oz. of gold and 12,695 tonnes of nickel. The company posted a net loss attributable to shareholders of US$180 million (US26¢ per share), and cash flows from operating activities of US$1.61 billion. The company expects to grow its copper production in 2021 to between 785,000 tonnes and 850,000 tonnes; its gold production to between 280,000 oz. and 300,000 oz.; and nickel to 23,000 tonnes and 27,000 tonnes. The company decreased its net debt in 2020 by US$266 million, US$136 million of that in the fourth quarter of the year.

Shares of Lundin Mining increased $1.91 to $15.21. The company reported 2020 production of metal in concentrate of 230,781 tonnes of copper; 142,744 tonnes of zinc; 163,000 oz. of gold; and 16,718 tonnes of nickel. Attributable net earnings totaled US$168.8 million (US23¢ per share); and adjusted EBITDA totaled US$856.9 million for the year. Cash flow from operations reached US$565.9 million. The company had a net position at the end of 2020 of US$63.2 million, relatively unchanged from the US$60.2 million at the end of 2019. This year the company expects to produce 275,000-299,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate; 141,000-151,000 tonnes of zinc; 170,000-180000 oz. gold; and 15,000-18,000 tonnes of nickel. Lundin forecasts its exploration expenditure for 2021 will be US$40 million, of which US$32 million will focus on in-mine and near-mine targets.

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