Northern Dynasty Minerals is a Canada-based company engaged in the exploration of mineral properties. The company has a 50% interest in Pebble Partnership, owner of the Pebble copper-gold-molybdenum project, one of the largest gold-copper deposits in the world, located in Alaska. Rio Tinto (RIO) has a 19% controlling stake in Northern Dynasty, while Mitsubishi owns 11%.
The Pebble gold-copper deposit, 50% owned by Anglo American, is the fifth-largest copper deposit containing 80 billion pounds copper, 107 million ounces gold, and 5.6 billion pounds molybdenum.
Once brought on stream, the project would be among the 10 largest copper producers in the world and among the major producers of gold and molybdenum. Production is likely to begin as early as 2016 with the pre-feasibility study slated for completion by 2012. On average, molybdenum reserves are estimated to account for almost 15% of Pebble's revenue, producing about 18% of global production.
All the four analysts covering the stock recommend a buy with a target price of $29.4, implying an upside of 107.6% from current levels. On a year-to-date basis, the stock has gained 68.6%. Based on the price Anglo had agreed to pay a few years ago for its 50% stake, the stock should currently trade at $20 vs. its current price of $14.19, say industry analysts.Leaving aside solar and wind, natural gas is seen by analysts as emerging as the top performer during 2011. It is widely known that the keenly awaited U.S. natural gas legislation that Congress has been defending is seen clearing in 2011. Furthermore, with rising oil prices and the natural gas bill likely to be passed, a common ground is anticipated in the new session with Congress giving a boost to natural gas companies.