Compared with the last reserve and resource estimate at June 30, 2017, silver contained in the consolidated proven and probable reserves dropped 9%, or 2.6 million ounces (Moz) to 25.6Moz, owing to mining depletion, the Nuestra Señora mine's transition to care and maintenance, and a change in pillar design at San Rafael (part of the Cosalá operations).
The company said these factors also contributed to a comparative decrease in zinc and lead between periods.
The mining recovery at San Rafael dropped from 90% to 80% after incorporating geotechnical parameters that reflected the pillar requirements for the ‘post-pillar cut and fill' mining method.
At Galena, mining continued to mainly focus on silver-lead ore production. The proven and probable reserves associated with this material decreased by 11%, or about 0.9Moz. Drilling and additional resource modeling work completed on the silver-copper resource increased the contained silver reserves by 12%, or 0.8Moz to 7.9Moz, the company said.
The net result was silver contained in the reserves remained unchanged, despite production depletion.
"The company has done a good job at managing its proven and probable mineral reserves and measured and indicated resources despite modest exploration budgets. With reserves and measured and indicated resources of approximately 100Moz of silver, 1.1 billion pounds of zinc, and over 800 million pounds of lead across our royalty- and stream-free properties, we provide very attractive production optionality and per share resource leverage to higher commodity prices," said CEO Darren Blasutti.
At Zone 120, part of the Cosalá operations, indicated resources increased 30% to over 16Moz silver.
Meanwhile, the inclusion of the San Felipe project added 9Moz of silver, 560Mlbs of zinc and 256Mlbs of lead to the measured and indicated resources.
Americas Silver retained 70Moz of silver in the measured and indicated resource categories, an increase of 12Moz or 21%; and 28Moz of inferred resources, a decrease of 9Moz or 23%.
The equity closed 6.27% higher Thursday at C$3.22 a share, which gave the miner a $138.77 million market value.