Copper prices soured by 3% on world markets at Chinese growth continued signs of slowing. As the price of $3.12 US/lb nears $3, the sole copper producer in the north must be warily watching the decline. We are, right here and now, sitting near a key support for copper—$3.00/lb.
There is only one copper mine north of 56—Capstone Mining Corp.‘s Minto mine near Carmacks, Yukon.
Capstone Mining Corp.‘s cash cost per pound was $2.50 at its Minto mine in Yukon. Capstone’s 2013 guidance for 85 million pounds ± 5% of copper in concentrates, at a total cash cost of US$1.65 to US$1.75 per pound of payable copper. Capstone Mining Corp. is a Canadian base metals mining company, with a mine in Mexico and the Minto copper-gold-silver mine in Yukon. In Q1 Capstone mined 8.4 M lbs copper at its Minto mine.
The Minto Mine is an open pit mining operation with conventional crushing, grinding, and flotation to produce copper concentrates with significant gold and silver credits. Concentrates are exported via the Port of Skagway, Alaska, to smelters in Asia for treatment and sale. In June 2012, the results of the pre-feasibility study Phase VI were released by Capstone which suggest extending the mine life to 2022.
Commodities continue to get hammered on world markets, particularly copper. This is a sign of weakening world growth and it portends bad things for small miners like Capstone. There is a still a ways to go before the price reaches the cash cost, but it is not that far.