Rio and BHP build new global iron ore cartel

Mexican drug cartels have been diversifying into the iron ore business, smuggling ore worth about US$1bn a year into China. But it’s the emergence of a more legitimate cartel – one run largely by Australians – that would worry the country more.Rio’s latest result shows how powerful the big three global producers have become. The company’s results for the six months to June 30, with underlying earnings rising 21% to US$5.1bn, are remarkable given that iron ore prices actually fell 20% over the period.After slashing costs, capital expenditure and debt levels, management hinted at higher dividends and more buy backs....

Mexican drug cartels have been diversifying into the iron ore business, smuggling ore worth about US$1bn a year into China. But it’s the emergence of a more legitimate cartel – one run largely by Australians – that would worry the country more.

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