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Metals and Mining: Winners and Losers

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Mag Silver (MVG) and Haynes International (HAYN) were among the top metals and mining stocks last week.

Mag Silver, engaged in mineral acquisition, exploration, and development business, was among the major gainers past week, up 12.6%. Canaccord Genuity upgraded the company to a buy rating from a speculative buy rating. The company's cash position for the third quarter was a robust $46.5 million. Mag Silver has revised its total exploration and administration budget for 2010 from the earlier $15 million to $19.9 million, spending $13.4 million as of Sept. 30, 2010.

Haynes International, producer of nickel- and cobalt-based alloys in sheet, coil, and plate forms, gained 12.2% last week. The company reported a profit of $5.5 million, or 45 cents per share, for the fourth quarter of 2010, as compared to a net loss of $3 million, or 25 cents per share, recorded a year ago. Revenue for the quarter was up 22.3% to $104.6 million. For the full year, the company's profit was $8.9 million, or 73 cents per share, as against a loss of $52.3 million, or $4.36 per share, in 2009. Haynes declared a dividend of 20 cents per share payable Dec. 15. The company believes that the uptrend in revenues, volumes, and net income will continue into 2011.

Stillwater Mining (SWC), engaged in the development, extraction, processing, refining, and marketing of platinum group metals, jumped 5.5%. The company recently announced a proposal to develop two more platinum and palladium mines, located within the existing mine permits. Initial development cost for the mines is estimated at $68 million. Besides, Stillwater is focusing on buying a mine near Marathon, Ontario for which it has received shareholders' approval for a $118 million worth deal in stock and cash.

Harsco (HSC), a multinational provider of industrial services and engineered products, rose 4.5% past week. The company recently declared a regular quarterly cash dividend of $0.205 per share payable February 2011. Meanwhile, Harsco has received two new orders worth more than $27 million - one is the company's largest ever single order for heat transfer products.

Silver Wheaton (SLW), a mining company primarily generating revenue from silver, advanced 3.2%. On November 26, BMO Capital Markets upgraded the stock from market perform to outperform by lifting its target price to $46 from the earlier $40. The company is benefiting from rising silver prices and expects to raise production by a fifth in 2011, totaling to 28 million silver equivalent ounces. Chief Executive Peter Barnes foresees silver hitting an all-time high of $50 per ounce over the next 3-4 years.

Platinum Group Metals (PLG), among major losers, fell 8%. ArcelorMittal (MT) fell 7.2%. The company recently said it expects global steel demand to slow down to 5%-6% in 2011 from an estimated double-digit expansion in 2010. As per the World Steel Association global steel demand is seen at 5.3% in 2011, as compared to the estimated 13.1% in 2010.

Aluminum producers Alumina (AWC) and Aluminum Corporation of China (ACH) shed 5.9% and 5%, respectively. Mechel (MTL), an integrated mining, steel, ferroalloys, and power company, lost 3.3%. The company recently signed a memorandum of understanding with Posco (PKX) for developing resources in Russia and a logistics route in the Far East. The agreement has four parts: resource exploitation and joint investments, ports modernization and infrastructure construction, review for construction of a steel mill to produce semi products in the mid/long-term, and promotion of products.

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