Biden's 25% China Tariff; Royal Gold Issues 2024 Guidance; Vale Reports Q1 Production And More: Wednesday's Top Mining Stories

Zinger Key Points
  • U.S. President Joe Biden to announce a 25% tariff on some Chinese steel and aluminum imports to protect American manufacturers.
  • Royal Gold issues 2024 guidance including expected metal sales of $17.0 to $20 million.

Top Stories for April 17, 2024:

  1. During a visit to Pittsburgh, President Joe Biden plans to announce new trade policies aimed at boosting the U.S. steel sector by imposing a 25% tariff on certain Chinese steel and aluminum imports.

The move seeks to protect American manufacturing jobs from China’s "unfair" trade practices by more than tripling U.S. tariffs to 25% for some products and increasing others from 0% or 7.5%.

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai will decide the final measures after reviewing current tariffs. 

Although Chinese steel and aluminum make up a small part of the U.S. market ($1.7 billion), these policies strive to protect American manufacturers from a potential increase in imports and competitive pressures.

  1. Royal Gold Inc RGLD issued its 2024 guidance, forecasting sales volumes, depreciation and amortization expense (DD&A) and tax rates. 

The company expects to sell 215,000 to 230,000 ounces of gold, 3.2 to 3.8 million ounces of silver, 14 million to 16 million pounds of copper and other metals worth $17 million to $20 million. 

DD&A expenses are projected to be between $141 million to $157 million, with an effective tax rate of 17% to 22%.

Given commodity price volatility, the guidance aims to enhance transparency by focusing on physical sales and royalty revenues instead of revenue conversion to gold equivalent ounces.

Also Read: Freeport-McMoRan Vs. Teck Resources — Which Copper Stock Has More Upside?

  1. Vale’s VALE first-quarter performance featured a 15% year-over-year increase in iron ore sales at 63.8 metric tons, with production up 6% to 70.8 metric tons due to improved operations at S11D and other initiatives. 

Pellet production rose 2% to 8.5 metric tons while copper output grew 22% to 81.9 kilotons, mainly from the Salobo 3 ramp-up. 

However, nickel production fell 4% to 39.5 kilotons, primarily due to the Onça Puma furnace rebuild, though this was partly mitigated by better output in Canada and Indonesia.

  1. Compania de Minas Buenaventura BVN announced first-quarter results with several production targets met or exceeded. 

Tambomayo surpassed gold, lead and zinc projections due to mining in higher-grade areas, though silver production was lower. 

Gold production at Orcopampa and Coimolache aligned with expectations, with Coimolache also facing delays from environmental permitting issues. 

Julcani and Uchucchacua met their production targets for silver, lead and zinc, while Yumpag started silver processing earlier than anticipated after receiving operational permits. 

El Brocal’s copper production was on target, with higher silver output and lower zinc grades. Its lead and zinc operations are under maintenance, aiming for an underground exploitation rate of 10,500 tons per day.

Now Read: Barrick Misses Preliminary Gold Production Estimate, Management Unfazed By Risks In Key African Country

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