Stock 30-05-2024 21:18 7 Views

3 Biggest US Silver Miners in 2024

The US was one of the world’s top silver producers in 2023, recording output of 1,000 metric tons (MT).

While that’s far below first-place Mexico’s production of 6,400 metric tons of silver, the US is still a major producer of the precious metal, and is likely to remain a key source moving forward. However, few mines in the US are primary silver producers — much of the silver in the country is produced as a by-product of gold mining; it can also be found with metals like copper and zinc.

So where exactly is silver produced in the US, and which companies are mining it? Alaska is the leading silver-producing state, followed by Nevada and Idaho. Read on for an overview of the three largest US silver producers by market cap.

Data for the stocks listed was current as of May 13, 2024.

1. Hecla Mining Company (NYSE:HL)

Company Profile

Market cap: US$3.3 billion

Hecla Mining has operating silver mines in Alaska and Idaho. It also has a silver operation in Canada’s Yukon Territory, and a gold-producing mine in Quebec. Additionally, Hecla has a variety of exploration projects across North America.

In its 2023 results, Hecla reported silver reserves of 238 million ounces, silver production of 14.3 million ounces and US$720.2 million in total sales, all of which are the second highest such figures in its history. The majority of the company’s 2023 production was derived from its Green Creek mine in Alaska and Lucky Friday mine in Idaho.

Hecla’s 2024 production guidance stands at 16.5 million to 17.5 million ounces, with the vast majority expected to come from its US operations. In Q1, the company produced 4.2 million ounces of silver, up 43 percent from Q4 2023.

‘The first quarter reflects an inflection point with the strong performance from Greens Creek, achieving full production at the Lucky Friday, and significant improvements in safety, environment, and production from Keno Hill,’ said Phillips S. Baker Jr., Hecla’s president and CEO, in a press release. ‘With this strong start to the year, we are well-positioned to achieve our production and cost guidance for 2024.’ The company also said it is on track to become Canada’s largest primary silver producer as it ramps up production at Keno Hill in Yukon.

2. Coeur Mining (NYSE:CDE)

Company Profile

Market cap: US$2.06 billion

Coeur Mining describes itself as a growing precious metals producer with four producing mines in the Americas. Its major silver-producing operation in the US is the Rochester silver-gold mine in Nevada.

The company also sees some silver output from its Wharf gold mine in South Dakota. Its other operating mines include the Palmarejo silver-gold complex in Mexico, and the Kensington gold mine in Alaska. In addition to that, Coeur is advancing work at its Silvertip silver-zinc-lead project in BC, Canada.

For 2023, Rochester’s silver production totaled 3.4 million ounces, falling slightly shy of its 2023 guidance of 3.5 million to 4.5 million ounces. Coeur’s 2024 production guidance for Rochester stands at 4.8 million to 6.6 million ounces of silver. The company is in the process of ramping up production at the mine in the first half of this year.

“The Company finished 2023 on a high note, highlighted by a significant step-up in production levels at the newly expanded Rochester mine in Nevada and a record cash flow year at the Wharf mine in South Dakota,” President and CEO Mitchell J. Krebs said upon the release of Coeur’s 2023 results.

3. Americas Gold and Silver (NYSEAMERICAN:USAS)

Company Profile

Market cap: C$86.83 million

Americas Gold and Silver is mining for silver in the US and Mexico. The company has two producing assets: the Cosala operation in Mexico, which includes the San Rafael mine, and the 60 percent owned Galena Complex in Idaho. It also re-evaluating the Relief Canyon mine in Nevada, and owns the San Felipe development project in Sonora, Mexico.

In 2023, Americas Gold and Silver reported attributable silver production from the Galena Complex of approximately 944,000 ounces of silver compared to about 672,000 ounces of silver production in the previous year. The company is working on resource expansion drilling at Galena to complete a resource estimate update with new near-term mineable resources. This work resulted in bonanza-grade discoveries at Galena in early 2024.

“The Galena Complex has tremendous potential to become one of the three largest primary silver producers in the United States over the next several years with not only substantial resource base on the balance sheet, but largely untapped exploration potential and excess milling capacity to grow silver production,’ COO Jim Currie stated.

Securities Disclosure: I, Melissa Pistilli, currently hold a small investment in Hecla Mining, but do not hold investments in any other company mentioned in this article.

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