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EY Canadian Mining Eye index starts the year on a high, ending Q4 2020 up 9%

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Sources available to discuss quarterly mining and metals industry performance and outlook

  • Gold prices remain positive on the back of inflation expectations
  • Base metals see continued growth supported by strong Chinese demand
  • Copper prices see seven-year high with anticipated government stimulus packages


The EY Canadian Mining Eye index ended the year with continued growth, up 9% in Q4 2020 following a 10% increase in the prior quarter.



Index comparisons Q4 2020 Q3 2020
Canadian Mining Eye index 9% 10%
S&P/TSX Composite Metals and Mining index 8% 4%
Major index -7% 6%


Gold prices remained stagnant through the fourth quarter, driven by COVID-19 vaccine breakthroughs and a weaker US dollar. These factors, alongside inflation expectations and declining real yields, are likely to keep gold prices positive in the near term.


“We’re hearing from economists around the world that US inflation is expected to rise in the coming months on the back of global economic recovery, supported by various governments’ fiscal and monetary stimulus initiatives,” says Jay Patel, EY Canada Mining & Metals Strategy and Transactions Leader. “With inflation pressures rising, we can anticipate continued demand for precious metals.”


At the same time, vaccine distribution, along with strong demand from China, are expected to positively support base metals prices in the near term. Base metals experienced sustained growth in Q4 2020 with copper prices up 16%, while nickel and zinc prices each saw a 14% increase.


“As we enter a new year and see economic recovery on the horizon, we’re optimistic that the industry will continue with its growth momentum,” says Jeff Swinoga, EY Canada Mining & Metals Co-Leader. “We’re already starting to see how expected government stimulus packages — such as China’s new five-year plan for greener production, Europe’s Green Deal and the planned package from the US — are driving sustainable infrastructure development and, in turn, greater demand for base metals like copper. Rare earth metals like nickel and cobalt are also benefitting from green-led initiatives, as the production of electric vehicles accelerates. ”


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Posted February 3, 2021

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