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Most top zinc producers book lower Q3'22 output

Twelve of the 20 largest zinc producers analyzed by S&P Global Market Intelligence posted lower output in the third quarter compared with 2021, with outputs for six miners falling by double-digit percentage points.

Overall, production for the top 20 zinc miners inched up 1.8% year over year and ticked down 0.5% quarter over quarter. Supply issues and the gloomy economic outlook have triggered volatility in the zinc market for most of 2022.

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Hudbay Minerals Inc. recorded the largest production drop in the analysis, with its zinc output plummeting 53.2% year over year and sinking 42.8% quarter over quarter. The decline was driven by the closure of the 777 mine and disruptions in the Snow Lake operation, both in Manitoba.

Pan American Silver Corp.'s zinc output fell 29.9% year over year. The company produces zinc as a byproduct from its silver mines.

Glencore PLC, the world's largest zinc miner, booked a 20.1% year-over-year decline in zinc production. In its third-quarter operations update, the company slashed its full-year 2022 zinc production guidance to about 945,000 tonnes from the previous target of 1.0 million tonnes, citing supply chain issues in Kazakhstan linked to Russia's war in Ukraine.

Australia-listed 29Metals Ltd. reported a 19.4% year-over-year drop in zinc production, while Newmont Corp. and Grupo México SAB de CV posted output declines of 18.3% and 11.9%, respectively.

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New Century Resources Ltd.'s zinc production surged 46.9% year over year and soared 34.6% quarter over quarter, the largest increase among the top 20 zinc miners. The company achieved record production at its Queensland, Australia-based Century mine during the quarter on the back of operational improvements.

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Among the five largest zinc producers, only Hindustan Zinc Ltd., Teck Resources Ltd. and Zijin Mining Group Co. Ltd. reported higher output both on a yearly and quarterly basis. Teck boosted its zinc production by 26.9% year over year, the highest increase in the group, while the outputs of Zijin and Hindustan rose 8.3% and 2.8%, respectively.

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