The copper industry is comprised of companies involved in the exploration, extraction, development, and production of copper, one of the most widely used metals today. Copper is used for a broad range of applications in electronics, construction, power generation, and transmission. Some of the big names in the sector include China-based Zijin Mining Group Co. Ltd., Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (FCX), and Australia-based OZ Minerals Ltd. (OZL).
Copper stocks, as represented by the Global X Copper Miners ETF (COPX), have significantly outperformed the broader market. COPX has provided a total return of 52.7% over the past 12 months, well above the Russell 1000's total return of 20.7%, as of December 1, 2020. All statistics in the tables below are as of December 1 as well.
Here are the top 3 copper stocks with the best value, the fastest earnings growth, and the most momentum.
Best Value Copper Stocks
These are the copper stocks with the lowest 12-month trailing price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio. Because profits can be returned to shareholders in the form of dividends and buybacks, a low P/E ratio shows you’re paying less for each dollar of profit generated.
|Best Value Copper Stocks|
|Price ($)||Market Cap ($B)||12-Month Trailing P/E Ratio|
|Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. (TRQ.TO)||CA$12.83||CA$2.6||4.9|
|Southern Copper Corp. (SCCO)||60.15||46.5||36.0|
|Lundin Mining Corp. (LUN.TO)||CA$9.90||CA$7.3||37.9|
- Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd.: Turquoise Hill Resources is a Canada-based mining company engaged in the exploration and development of mineral and metal properties. The company conducts copper and gold mining operations at the Oyu Tolgoi mine in southern Mongolia. For Q3 2020, Turquoise Hill reported a 26.4% year-over-year (YOY) increase in revenue as while income increased by 258.9% over the same period. This performance was driven in part by declines in cost of sales, production, and capital expenditures.
- Southern Copper Corp.: Southern Copper is engaged in the exploration, development, and production of copper. In the process, the company also produces several by-products including molybdenum, silver, zinc, sulfuric acid and other metals.
- Lundin Mining Corp.: Lundin Mining is a Canada-based diversified base metals mining company. The firm has operations in Chile, Brazil, Sweden, Portugal, and the U.S. Besides copper, Lundin Mining focuses on zinc, gold, and nickel. In a November 30 operational outlook update, the company said it expects copper production to increase by 25% in 2021 due to increasing grades at its Candelaria mining operation.
Fastest Growing Copper Stocks
These are the copper stocks with the highest YOY earnings per share (EPS) growth for the most recent quarter. Rising earnings show that a company’s business is growing and is generating more money that it can reinvest or return to shareholders.
|Fastest Growing Copper Stocks|
|Market Cap ($B)||EPS Growth (%)|
|Lundin Mining Corp. (LUN.TO)||CA$9.90||CA$7.3||368.2|
|Ero Copper Corp. (ERO.TO)||CA$21.30||CA$1.8||90.5|
|Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. (TRQ.TO)||CA$12.83||CA$2.6||79.3|
- Lundin Mining Corp.: See company description above.
- Ero Copper Corp.: Ero Copper is a Canada-based mining company that engages in the production and sale of copper, gold, and silver in mining locations primarily in Brazil. On November 30, the company announced highlights for 2020, including a 43% increase in proven and probable copper reserves and a 28% increase in measured and indicated copper reserves in its Pilar Mine.
- Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd.: See company description above.
Copper Stocks with the Most Momentum
These are the copper stocks that had the highest total return over the last 12 months.
|Copper Stocks with the Most Momentum|
|Price ($)||Market Cap ($M)||12-Month Trailing Total Return (%)|
|Capstone Mining Corp. (CS.TO)||CA$1.96||CA$789.0||237.9|
|Copper Mountain Mining Corp. (CMMC.TO)||CA$1.64||CA$340.3||182.8|
|Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. (TRQ.TO)||CA$12.83||CA$2,582||110.3|
|Global X Copper Miners ETF (COPX)||N/A||N/A||52.7|
- Capstone Mining Corp.: Capstone Mining is a Canada-based company involved in the mining and production of minerals including copper, zinc, gold, silver, and iron. Capstone has projects in Chile, Mexico, and Canada. For Q3 Capstone reported a 57.4% YOY increase in revenue and net income of $2.3 million versus net loss of $10.7 million in Q3 2019. The performance was driven by a strong quarter at the company's Cozamin mining operation, which reported the lowest quarterly cash cost in operating history. The company said that it will begin implementing innovations in 2021 which will yield 40% higher production at 20% lower costs by 2023.
- Copper Mountain Mining Corp.: Copper Mountain Mining is a Canadian developer of mineral properties and focused on Canadian copper mining operations.
- Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd.: See above for company description.
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YCharts. "Financial Data." Accessed Sep. 15, 2020.
Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. "Investor Dashboard." Accessed Dec. 2, 2020.
Lundin Mining Corp. "Lundin Mining Provides Operational Outlook & Shareholder Returns Update." Accessed Dec. 2, 2020.
Ero Copper Corp. "Ero Copper significantly increases copper reserves with the integration of Deepening Extension Project into updated life-of-mine plan for the Vale do Curaçá Property." Accessed Dec. 2, 2020.
Capstone Mining Corp. "Capstone Reports Third Quarter 2020 Results; Lowest Quarterly Costs on Record for Cozamin Mine." Accessed Dec. 2, 2020.