Reuters Global Mining and Metals Summit
A rebound in metals prices has lifted the mood in the metals and mining industry this spring compared to the gloom late last year when sharp market losses unsettled investors and hammered share prices. The economic backdrop brightened after fears eased about Europe’s debt crisis, the United States showed signs of economic recovery and top metals consumer China avoided a hard landing.
Investors are gun-shy, however, amid uncertainty about demand and after a rollercoaster ride last year saw benchmark industrial metal copper soar to record highs over $10,000 per tonne then shed 35 percent of its value. Some question whether gold has lost its safe-haven status after prices tracked other risky assets instead of going their own way.
Mining companies face mounting costs labour strife and fresh demands from governments for a bigger slice of revenues through higher royalties and taxes. Merger activity, however, may get a boost if commodity giant Glencore is successful in tying up with miner Xstrata in what would be the sector’s biggest ever deal.
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