Currently viewing Global edition

Metals prices cause tough times for Excellon

Excellon Resources finds itself in a tough spot as declining base metal prices and increasing costs send its La Platosa silver-lead-zinc mine in Durango, Mexico into the red.
Metals prices cause tough times for Excellon Metals prices cause tough times for Excellon Metals prices cause tough times for Excellon Metals prices cause tough times for Excellon Metals prices cause tough times for Excellon

Tough times for La Platosa in Mexico

Staff Reporter

Reporting its June quarter financial results, the company recorded a net loss of $2.2 million compared with a profit of $1.3 million in the same period of 2018 as revenue shrank from $9.9 million to $8.7 million.

While the company sold 16% more payable silver-equivalent ounces to 660,292oz, it received less for them compared with the prior year period. Net revenues fell 12% as the silver price fell 10%, lead 22% and zinc 13%.

Excellon produced 582,937oz silver-equivalent in the quarter comprised of 276,805oz silver, 1.8 million pounds of lead and 2.5Mlb of zinc at an average grade of 514 grams per tonne of silver, 4.97% lead and 7.4% zinc.

Mined tonnage has increased 30% in the first half of 2019 compared to the 2018 period, with 19,964 tonnes processed in the second quarter compared to 16,580t in the prior year period.

At the same time, Excellon saw its production cost increase 31% which included a 37.5% increase in electricity rates from $0.08/kWh to $0.11/kWh. This raised its power bill by $0.3 million compared to the 2018 period.

Falling by-product credits due to lower base metals prices over the past year have blown-out the company's all-in sustaining costs (AISC) to unprofitable levels, even though it was successful in reining them in somewhat during the quarter.

Its AISC was $16.89/oz in the quarter compared to $25.35/oz in the first quarter and $9.75/oz in the second quarter of 2018.

The loss means the company's cash position has almost halved since the start of the year to C$3.4 million while its working capital position has more than halved to $3.8 million.

At an operational level, the company is working to reduce dilution and upgrade its Miguel Auza plant to improve metal recoveries.

Shares in Excellon Resources (TSXV:EXN) are trading at C$1.18, valuing the company at $117 million. Its share price has increased 49% since the start of the year.