Mining Sector Price Trajectory Resembles 1990s

John Robertson

A two year downtrend in mining sector prices had given way to a relatively stable trajectory after mid 2013 similar to that experienced in the latter part of the 1990s and first few years of the 2000s. The 1990s scenario remains the closest historical parallel to present conditions although the strength of the US dollar exchange rate since mid 2014 has added an unusual weight to US dollar commodity prices causing a further leg down in the cycle which extended until late 2015. So far in 2016, equity prices have clawed their way back to 2013 levels to once again start resembling the 1990s scenario with the first signs of cyclical stabilisation in sector equity prices. The late 1990s and early 2000s was a period of macroeconomic upheaval during which time sector pricing nonetheless proved relatively stable. That remains a possible scenario for sector prices. Relative stability suggests a chance for companies genuinely adding value through development success to see their share prices move higher. This increasingly realistic expectation was the experience in the late 1990s and early 2000s.


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