Entering text into the input field will update the search result below

Top Primary Silver Mining Industry Production Yield Falls To The Lowest Ever

Money Metals Exchange profile picture
Money Metals Exchange


  • The top primary silver mining companies' average yield fell from 13 oz/t in 2005 to 6.0 oz/t last year.
  • Peru's Hochschild average yield declined from 7.5 oz/t in 2018 to 5.9 oz/t last year, while Buenaventura's average yield fell from 10.6 oz/t to 7.5 oz/t during the same period.
  • Also, Russia's Polymetal International, Dukat Operations, saw its average yield fall to 7.7 oz/t last year down from 8.5 oz/t in 2018.

By Steve St. Angelo

The era of high-grade silver mines may be coming to an end. Remarkably, the top primary silver miners' average yield fell to the lowest ever in 2019. Which begs the question, will high-grade silver mines become extinct in the not-so-distant future? Well, if we look at the data, it seems to be already happening.

Since I started researching the primary silver mining industry, the yields at many high-grade silver mines have fallen drastically. For example, Fresnillo Plc's (OTCPK:FNLPF) Flagship mine, the Fresnillo Mine, had seen its average yield decline from 15 oz/t (ounce per tonne) in 2005 to only 5.3 oz/t last year. That is one hell of a reduction in just 14 years… nearly 10 oz/t of silver yield evaporated.

Take a look at how much more silver the Fresnillo Mine was producing in 2005 compared to 2019… processing LESS ORE!!

  • Fresnillo Mine 2005 Production = 33.4 million oz
  • Fresnillo Mine 2005 Processed Ore = 2.2 million tons
  • Fresnillo Mine 2005 Average Yield = 15.2 oz/t
  • Fresnillo Mine 2019 Production = 13.0 million oz
  • Fresnillo Mine 2019 Processed Ore = 2.5 million tons
  • Fresnillo Mine 2019 Average Yield = 5.3 oz/t

As we can see, workers at the Fresnillo Mine processed more ore in 2019 to produce 20 million fewer ounces of silver. No wonder the cost to produce silver has risen from $4-5 per ounce back in 2005 to over $15+ an ounce presently.

Now, if we combine the top seven primary silver miners in my group, the average yield fell to a record low of 6.0 oz/t in 2019:

Top 7 Primary Silver Mining Companies and Mines Average Yield 2005-2019

The top primary silver mining companies' average yield fell from 13 oz/t in 2005 to 6.0 oz/t last year. That's a 54% decline in average yield from the top primary silver mining industry. This means these silver

This article was written by

Money Metals Exchange profile picture
Precious Metals News & Analysis - Gold News, Silver News from Money Metals Exchange Money Metals Exchange provides the latest precious metals news for savvy, self-reliant investors who want to invest in gold, silver & other precious metals. | Check Silver Prices: https://www.moneymetals.com/silver-price | Check Gold Prices: https://www.moneymetals.com/gold-price

Recommended For You

Comments (15)

Keith King profile picture
Great analyses, have you done the same for gold?
outstanding research, and absolute correct informations (same i catch up, doing my due dilligence about the quarterly reports of silver mining companies i have shares) . The biggest silver mines are bleeding out fast speeding. At the very moment only 2 bigger mines have their income >60% from silver. With this low silver prices (under 18$) its hard to make any possitive income.
Most are mining outside the US $ and pay foreign (cheap currencies) salaries and sell their Product Silver in hard US$.....once the USD starts to fall ....every percent the USD fall in price their possitive earnings dwindle.
Silver will become scarce in the very nearterm.
Why_is_my_portfolio_red profile picture
so lower supply, higher prices?
if USD fall....yes
if silver demand pick little by little up....yes
if economy will only pick up a little....yes
if inflation sets in after printing endless paper money.....yes
if salaries get higher....oil higher....yes
Why_is_my_portfolio_red profile picture
Good optimistic outlooks for my silver!
adriano321 profile picture
Escobal....will this beast ever reopen? Actually, I hope not in the current low cost environment.
thats the PAAS mine right?.....not so soon!....=less silver
Profitshearer profile picture
Is this just a scare tactic? Based on this article, I would think the reductions in mining of high grade silver would already be reflected in prices. But...not so. Prices should have already been steadily rising, but they're not. So the question is, why not? Answer that; then, you'll know what to do.
silver miners holding their stockpile back....
but paper-future selling manipulates market prices....
banks are short...in Gold, silver, platinum
2022 they are allowed to pile up their holdings in this metals to meet BASEL III requirements....they not want to pay high.....well what banks thinks i dont know
Declining supply of an essential resource hmmmmm should mean higher prices. Especially as the cost of extracting more ‘difficult to get to’ silver will raise the AISCs and if the price falls as some feel inclined to suggest mines will close. Basic economics at play. Demand will rise, supply is falling there is no other scenario other than higher silver prices! How high (apart from being a Chinaman) is anyone’s guess!
Investors moving into miners, or physical?
adriano321 profile picture
I recommend both...insurance and investment
its an no brainer.....that if i need to pay for an hamburger or hotdog ....or any meal..the same amount like to buy an silver/oz coin.....pure silver coin....

it was seldom so cheap to get a whole big box of silver coins for just such little amount of paper money
well once was 1USD ...just 1 oz Goldcoin....
i guess today you pay more than 1USD for 1 oz of Gold.......dont you?
Why_is_my_portfolio_red profile picture
What on earth?
Disagree with this article? Submit your own. To report a factual error in this article, . Your feedback matters to us!
To ensure this doesn’t happen in the future, please enable Javascript and cookies in your browser.
Is this happening to you frequently? Please report it on our feedback forum.
If you have an ad-blocker enabled you may be blocked from proceeding. Please disable your ad-blocker and refresh.