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Freeport-McMoRan’s 4Q17 Production Profile versus Other Miners’


Feb. 21 2018, Updated 7:35 a.m. ET

4Q17 production profile

In this article, we’ll look at leading copper miners’ 4Q17 production data. By looking at major copper miners’ production profiles, we can get crucial insights into the global copper supply.

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Comparative analysis

  • Freeport-McMoRan (FCX) shipped 461,000 metric tons of copper in 4Q17, compared to 422,000 metric tons in 3Q17 and 544,000 metric tons in 4Q16. While the company’s 4Q17 copper shipments fell on a yearly basis, they rose 9.2% on a sequential basis.
  • BHP Billiton (BHP) shipped 429,000 metric tons of copper in the quarter—a year-over-year (or YoY) rise of 20.1%. BHP’s fiscal year ends on June 30. Rio Tinto’s (RIO) 4Q17 copper production also rose 10.4% YoY to 148,000 metric tons. The company got its first share of copper production from Grasberg in 4Q17 after a gap of two years.
  • Glencore produced 363,000 metric tons of copper in 4Q17, which was similar to 4Q16. Looking at the full-year production report, we see that the company’s own sourced copper production fell 8.1% YoY to 1.3 million metric tons in 2017.
  • Anglo American produced 148,600 metric tons of copper in 4Q17—a YoY increase of 1.0%. Antofagasta (ANTO) produced 177,800 metric tons of copper in 4Q17, which was 13.1% lower than 4Q16. The company’s 2017 copper production fell 0.7%, compared to 2016 to 704,300 metric tons.
  • Southern Copper produced 226,000 metric tons of copper in 4Q17, which was 0.7% lower than 4Q16. First Quantum Minerals (FM) produced 154,319 metric tons of copper in 4Q17, which was a new quarterly record for the company.

We also need to follow leading producers’ guidance to understand where markets could be headed in 2018. Continue reading to the next part of this series for a comparative analysis of copper miners’ 2018 production plans.


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