When shares of mining companies including Freeport-McMoRan to Glencore were collapsing last year, a small fund run by JPMorgan chose to hold on. Now, it’s reaping the rewards of a metals rebound that’s turning bears into bulls.
Bloomberg News reports that Old Mutual-JPM Natural Resources Fund has delivered a return of 79% this year, beating all but two of the 150 funds it competes with in North America and Western Europe that are tracked by Bloomberg. Glencore, one of its biggest holdings, has tripled after plunging 70% in 2015. Freeport lost about as much last year, only to double in 2016.
Before the recovery, the industry was mired in a three-year slump as output surged and demand slowed from top consumer China. A Bloomberg Intelligence gauge of 18 global base-metal producers including Freeport, Glencore and BHP Billiton Ltd. slumped 66% from the end of 2012 through 2015. The sentiment is turning as the Chinese economy stabilizes and President-elect Donald Trump pledges to spend as much as $1tril on infrastructure in the U.S.
The BI producers index has jumped about 69% in 2016, heading for its best year since 2009, compared with an 11% gain in the S&P 500 Index of equities.
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