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Why the Independence Group share price is up 80% this year

The Independence Group NL (ASX: IGO) share price has rocketed 79.61% higher since the start of January.

So what’s causing this $3.85 billion company’s shares to surge higher in 2019?

What does Independence Group do?

Independence Group is an ASX-listed nickel and gold miner with operations headquartered in Perth.

The company owns and operates its Nova nickel, copper and cobalt project and has a 30% stake in the Tropicana Gold Mine joint venture (JV).

The other 70% of the gold mining operation is held by mega miner AngloGold Ashanti Ltd (ASX: AGG).

Why has the Independence Group share price rocketed higher in 2019?

Independence Group had a strong start to the year as it posted record production from both its Nova and Tropicana operations.

The Independence Group share price has been consistently climbing higher in 2019, despite the company’s heavy tilt towards battery metals.

While others such as Syrah Resources Ltd (ASX: SYR) have seen their share prices plummet, a rising gold price has helped Independence Group shares climb higher in 2019.

What about the company’s financial results?

The Aussie miner’s production numbers beat guidance almost across the board.

Nickel in concentrate, copper in concentrate and cobalt in concentrate production from its Nova operations all beat expectations.

Gold produced from Tropicana came in at 518,172 ounces in line with guidance, with gold sold also as expected.

Importantly for Independence Group, the cash cost for both Nova and Tropicana were well-managed throughout the year.

Exploration expenditure came in at $57.6 million, outside of the $47 million to $54 million guidance range, but the Independence Group share price pushed higher still.

Foolish takeaway

The company’s share price growth has been made more impressive given the share price woes of some fellow ASX miners.

While the Newcrest Mining Ltd (ASX: NCM) share price has climbed higher this year, the likes of St Barbara Ltd (ASX: SBM) remain in the red.

Independence Group shares have also outperformed the ASX 200 in 2019, but are a little pricey at 50.8x earnings.

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Motley Fool contributor Kenneth Hall has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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