On Thursday, October 13, First Majestic Silver Corp. (NYSE:AG) reported that it produced a record 4.5 million silver equivalent ounces in the third quarter of 2016. This was 27% higher than the third quarter of 2015.
First Majestic’s production in the third quarter consisted of 3.1 million ounces of silver, 14,452 ounces of gold, 8.0 million pounds of lead, and 1.5 million pounds of zinc. (Source: “First Majestic Achieves New Record in Silver Production; Produces 4.5 million Silver Eqv. Ounces in Third Quarter,” First Majestic Silver Corp., October 13, 2016.)
Regarding record production at the company, President and CEO of First Majestic Silver, Keith Neumeyer, said “Higher silver grades, throughput rates and recoveries propelled silver production to a new Company record of over 3.1 million ounces during the quarter.”
Which property saw the biggest improvement in grades? Neumeyer added “We saw significant grade improvements, particularly at Santa Elena, La Guitarra and San Martin, as a result of improved mine sequencing and dilution control.”
About First Majestic Silver’s exploration and development, he said “ Due to the improved operational cash flows, we’ve significantly expanded our exploration programs resulting in 19 drill rigs currently active on our properties which will allow us to release updated Reserve and Resource estimates for Del Toro, La Parrilla and San Martin in the first quarter of 2017. At La Encantada, detailed engineering has been completed and furnace manufacturing has started for the construction of our new roasting circuit planned for final completion in the fourth quarter of 2017.” (Source: Ibid.)
Average silver grades at the company increased to 150 g/t from the previous quarter’s 148 g/t. First Majestic Silver processed 838,233 tonnes of ore—a five percent increase quarter-over-quarter. Silver recoveries at the company increased by three percent from the previous quarter and averaged 77%.
In the third quarter, First Majestic completed 36,290 meters of diamond drilling. In the previous quarter, it was 19,342 meters. These represent an increase of 88% quarter-over-quarter.
At 11:30 a.m. Thursday, First Majestic Silver’s stock was trading at $7.98, up 1.01% from the previous day. It went as high as $8.17 in early trading. In 2011, when silver prices were trading as high as $49.00 an ounce, AG stock was trading around $24.00.