Copper is a metal that can take a hammering. Copper stocks are, as well, with the commodity’s downturn.
Take Freeport-McMoRan (ticker: FCX), the world’s largest publicly traded copper producer. Over the last five years through Wednesday’s close, the stock is down 68%, adjusted for dividends.
Speaking of dividends, Freeport-McMoRan ended such payments in December. The company emphasized the bright side of the suspension: It would save about $240 million in cash per year “and further enhance Freeport-McMoRan’s liquidity during this period of weak market conditions.”
We were skeptical of the copper rally that seemed to materialize earlier this year, and the per-pound price remains almost as cheap as rotisserie chicken at about $2.25.