Mining in Montana: Stillwater Mine to celebrate 30 years in busi - | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Mining in Montana: Stillwater Mine to celebrate 30 years in business

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Stillwater Mining Company will celebrate 30 years in the mining business in 2016.

It is the only U.S. producer of platinum group metals. President and CEO Mick McMullen says the mining business is cyclical.

The company has certainly seen its ups and downs. Recently the company laid off workers and recently the company announced a loss after the prices of platinum and palladium went down.

McMullen says there are things companies have to do to be successful including keeping costs down. He says, "When you look at all the other platinum and palladium producers in the world you know everyone's got a different cost structure and so you want to be what they call the last man standing which is you want your cost to be lower than everyone else's so that if prices fall other people start leaving the business leaving the industry and supply gets reduced and that means prices go up and then you can survive."

McMullen says the company isn't quite there yet but it is a lot closer than it was two years ago.