Major producers with high profile difficulties (e.g. Barrick) and newly promoted CEOs may hesitate to make acquisitions, especially of larger pre-production assets or operating assets. However, those like Goldcorp, Agnico, and Yamana, whose issues have been less severe, will have more leeway with shareholders. The largest North American producers need to continuously develop projects to offset the natural depletion inherent in the mining business. If management teams do not act to purchase advanced assets, many will likely find themselves without replacement production post 2017
Barron's says: "the combo of production needs, the low valuation of speculative project developers, and the widening valuation gap between the small and the large would be three of the factors pushing toward yes."