With the metals and mining sector under siege from free-falling commodity prices and even worse stock performance, Canaccord Adams analysts Gary Lampard and Orest Wowkodaw, have made sharp negative revisions to their metal price and stock price forecasts. It's not pretty.
In copper, the flagship base metal, they expect prices to continue falling because strong surpluses of more than 400,000 tons are anticipated in 2009 and 2010. An average price of $2.00 a pound is expected in 2009 and 2010, and they noted that the bottom of the cycle has not been reached.
For nickel, meanwhile, they noted that the market is likely to remain in "significant over-supply" in the near-to-medium term, a result of the vicious supply-side response that happened after it soared to an absurd $24.00 a pound last year. They expect an average price of $6.50 a pound next year and $7.00 in 2010.
Zinc looks a little better. More production cuts are needed but the bottom appears close, they wrote. They expect $0.77.5 a pound in 2009 and $0.90 in 2010.
They also cut coking coal, but believe the market is essentially balanced despite some downside risk.
Put it all together and it comes as no surprise that Mr. Lampard and Mr. Wowkodaw are slashing the equities they cover to far lower levels to reflect the diminished expectations for the sector. That goes for big names like Teck Cominco Ltd. (TCK) and Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold Inc. (FCX) to small-cap players like Centenario Copper Corp. [TSX:CCT] and Grande Cache Coal Corp. (OTC:GACHF).