What are the best copper stocks on the TSX so far this year? These five companies have seen the biggest gains year-to-date.
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Copper has had a volatile year so far, with the coronavirus impacting demand and supply disruptions continuing to hit the market.
Unlike the first three months of the year, the trend in copper prices was upward for most of the second quarter, with the red metal bouncing back from this year’s March low of US$4,617.50 per tonne to reach a high point for the period of US$6,038 on June 30.
Despite the current volatile environment, many analysts and companies expect copper to boom in the coming years, with electrification and electric vehicles growing in popularity and subsequently increasing the world’s appetite for copper.
Some of the top copper stocks on the TSX have seen over 600 percent year-to-date gains, which you can find on the list below. This list was generated on July 2, 2020, using TradingView’s stock screener, and only companies with market capitalizations greater than C$50 million are included.
1. Aura Minerals (TSX:ORA)
Current price: C$185, year-to-date gain: 617.61 percent
Focused on copper and gold projects, Aura Minerals is a mid-tier producer with multiple projects in Mexico, where its Aranzazu copper-gold-silver mine is located. The multinational mining company also has assets situated in Honduras, Colombia and Brazil.
In early March, Aura released an updated resource and reserves estimate for its projects. Aranzazu currently holds total proven reserves of 1,494,000 tonnes of copper at a 1.6 percent grade, and measured resources of 3,249,000 copper at a 1.71 percent grade.
Earlier this year, the company announced an initial public offering in Brazil, but plans were postponed due to the impact of COVID-19 on market conditions. The company resumed the process on June 1, giving more details on June 24; finally, it announced on July 2 that the price per BDR, which represents one share, has been set at 820 reals.
2. Northern Dynasty Minerals (TSX:NDM)
Current price: C$1.96, year-to-date gain: 250 percent
Northern Dynasty Minerals is focused on developing the Pebble project in Alaska, where according to the company, the world’s largest undeveloped copper-gold-molybdenum-silver resource is located.
In February, the company made news headlines when a draft environmental impact statement for the project started to circulate. The company said the information it has seen in a leaked copy of the executive summary is positive and it believes it will support the issuance of a permit for construction.
Late in March, Northern Dynasty released a statement saying it has been able to continue to advance its project despite taking COVID-19 precautions. The company also received positive news for its project in April, when a court rejected litigation filed by Pebble opponents.
Later in the second quarter, the company published a letter issued by the US Environmental Protection Agency confirming that the environmental impact statement process for the proposed Pebble mine is proceeding well. It is being led by the US Army Corps of Engineers.
3. PolyMet Mining (TSX:POM)
Current price: C$0.58, year-to-date gain: 70.59 percent
PolyMet Mining holds a 100 percent interest in the NorthMet copper-nickel–precious metals orebody through a long-term lease. The project, which is located in the established mining district of the Mesabi Iron Range in Northeastern Minnesota, has a definitive feasibility study, and PolyMet has received permits to build and operate an open-pit mine and associated processing facilities.
A number of legal challenges have been filed contesting various aspects of federal and state decisions regarding PolyMet’s project, which the company has continued to litigate in court. In mid-June, the Minnesota Supreme Court granted a review of a Minnesota Court of Appeals ruling regarding the NorthMet project air permit; it was the second case in which the Supreme Court has granted a review of the lower court’s ruling on NorthMet project permits.
4. Western Copper and Gold (TSX:WRN)
Current price: C$1.43, year-to-date gain: 33.64 percent
Western Copper and Gold is focused on developing its Casino project, located in Canada’s Yukon Territory. The company recently acquired the Canadian Creek project, which is adjacent to both the Casino project and Newmont Goldcorp’s (TSX:NGT,NYSE:NEM) Coffee project.
Following a strategic investment at the start of the year, Michael Vitton joined the company’s board in June. Additionally, Western Copper and Gold announced its drilling campaign, which started in mid-June and is expected to be completed by the end of the third quarter.
5. Marimaca Copper (TSX:MARI)
Current price: C$1.83, year-to-date gain: 12.62 percent
Formerly Coro Mining, Marimaca Copper announced its name change on May 27. The company’s name now aligns with its flagship development asset in Chile, the Marimaca project, which is one of the largest copper discoveries in Northern Chile.
In January, the company provided an updated and expanded mineral resource estimate for the asset. More recently, in June, Maricama published the results of a detailed trade-off analysis, conducted by independent consultant Gestion y Economia Minera Limitada, for the development of its flagship property. A preliminary economic assessment is expected in the near term.
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Securities Disclosure: I, Priscila Barrera, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
Editorial Disclosure: Western Copper and Gold is a client of the Investing News Network. This article is not paid-for content.