Freeport-McMoRan’s 1Q18 earnings
Freeport-McMoRan (FCX), the leading US-based copper miner, is slated to release its 1Q18 earnings on April 24. Teck Resources (TECK) is also expected to release its quarterly earnings on the same day, followed by First Quantum Minerals’ (FM) earnings release on April 26. Since it’s quarterly earnings season, diversified miners including BHP Billiton (BHP) will likely only release their operational data, as these companies only release their half-yearly and annual financial results. Rio Tinto (RIO) has already released its 1Q18 production data.
2018 is turning out to be a lackluster year for copper. On the fundamental front, copper supply has been resilient while demand offtake hasn’t kept up. We’ve seen a spike in global copper inventories in 1Q18. Copper treatment and refining charges have also been subdued that points to ample concentrate supply.
While these factors are affecting copper this year, the US-China trade war and escalating tensions between the United States and Russia aren’t helping copper’s cause either. Rising geopolitical tensions have hurt base metals. Aluminum has been an aberration, as the lightweight metal climbed to multi-year highs after President Trump imposed sanctions on RUSAL, which accounts for ~6% of global aluminum production.
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In this series, we’ll explore what analysts expect from Freeport’s 1Q18 earnings. We’ll also look at some of the key updates the markets should watch for in the company’s 1Q18 earnings call.
Let’s begin by analyzing Freeport’s 1Q18 revenue estimates in the next part of this series.