Archive | Gold and Silver

Golden Opportunity: Geopolitical uncertainty has given a boost to gold markets and Canadian miners – by Sandra Rubin (Lexpert Business of Law – September 22, 2017)

Exploration work and financings are back on the table, and foreign investors are taking notice.

EXCEPT FOR THE ODD moment here and there, the Midas Touch has been missing in action from the gold market for the past five years. But guess what? After watching prices slide sideways or slip downward along with most other mining stocks during the long dry spell — when raising money for gold companies is described by Frank Mariage of Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP as “an extreme sport” — investor appetite for gold is quietly rebounding.

There are a few different reasons for the renewed demand, but one that keeps coming up is the US dollar. Seen as the global reserve currency and a safe haven since World War II, that view has slowly been eroding. In recent months, geopolitical tensions have ratcheted up while US consumer spending has come in below expectations — suggesting the American economy is not as strong as the market had been pricing in.

Gold and the US dollar move in opposite directions. So any pressure on the US dollar makes gold more expensive for Americans but cheaper for foreign investors to buy — an attractive combination for investors looking to hedge their US-denominated investments. Continue Reading →

McEwen will be ‘aggressive’ in Timmins gold camp – by Staff (Northern Ontario Business – September 22, 2017)

New owner of Black Fox Mine promises to max out its potential

Mining magnate Rob McEwen has big plans for the Black Fox Mine complex, his company’s latest acquisition in the Timmins mining district. McEwen Mining announced the closing of a US$46.6 million bought deal offering on Sept. 22.

The money is earmarked for the purchase of Black Fox from Primero Mining and for general working purposes. The $35-million deal announced in August is expected to be finalized during the first week of October.

“The opportunity to buy Black Fox came together quickly and the timeframe to close was short, which meant that our financing options were limited to a bought deal or the issuance of debt,” said McEwen in a company news release. Continue Reading →

Eldorado backs down on threat to halt Greek investment, for now – by Angeliki Koutantou (Reuters Canada – September 21, 2017)

ATHENS (Reuters) – Eldorado Gold (ELD.TO) EGO.N on Thursday postponed a decision to freeze its investment in Greece, saying that talks with the country’s leftist-led government, which granted it key permits last week, were “constructive”.

The Canadian miner last week threatened to halt new investment in its Olympias, Skouries and the Stratoni mines in the northern Greek region of Halkidiki from Sept. 22 unless the Greek government granted it permits and showed a willingness to engage in talks.

Eldorado also said it would only reassess its decision to freeze its investment if it got a permit for a flotation plant in Skouries. Since then Athens has issued permits to allow Eldorado’s Olympias project to become fully operational and has also launched an arbitration process to settle a long-running dispute over a metallurgical plant in Madem Lakkos. Continue Reading →

Yukon placer miners don’t dig the idea of higher gold royalty rates – by Nancy Thomson (CBC News North – September 21, 2017)

‘The impression that a placer miner has a room full of gold that they can roll in — just doesn’t exist’

The Klondike Placer Miners’ Association (KPMA) says modernizing the royalty rates for placer gold won’t help the Yukon government avoid budget deficits. About 35 placer miners presented their opinions to the territory’s financial advisory panel at a meeting this week in Dawson City.

The independent panel issued a draft report earlier this month, spelling out ways the government might balance its books in the future. One recommendation is to review taxation on mining with a possible increase on the royalty rate on placer gold operations.

But placer miners say their industry makes a valuable contribution to local economies — and should not be taxed further. KPMA president Mike McDougall says although miners pay only about 37 and a half cents tax per ounce of gold — a royalty rate that hasn’t changed in a century — they also pay business and personal income tax. Continue Reading →

AUDIO: A mine was once here: reclamation underway at Hemlo in northern Ontario – by Jeff Walters (CBC News Thunder Bay – September 21, 2017)

Could take 50 years for site to blend into surrounding forest

It is considered to be one of the best gold mine camps in Canada, and the reclamation underway at the Hemlo Gold Camp near Marathon, Ont., could also make it one of the best mining cleanups in the country. The Hemlo camp was home to three mines, operating side by side, for nearly three decades. Now, the Golden Giant and David Bell Mines are empty fields.

The Gold Giant Mine operated until 2014, while the David Bell Mine ceased production in 2010. The Williams Mine, the furthest west of the three operations, at this point, could run its open pit and underground workings until 2031.

“To see [them] close down is definitely a hard thing to see, but we wanted to make sure it was done responsibly,” said Jeremy Dart, Barrick’s environmental superintendent. “A lot of the employees and people that worked here had some excellent training and skills they were able to take to other mining operations, or other career sets.” Continue Reading →

McEwen Mining – Regaining the Long-Lost Gold Mojo – by Christopher Ecclestone ( – September 20, 2017)

Back at the end of last decade (yes, that long ago) we found ourselves confounded when investors rhapsodized to us about the virtues of a company that then carried the portentous and momentous title, US Gold. The attraction of this stock was supposedly that it was run by Rob McEwen, a Canadian mining entrepreneur that we were reliably informed could walk on water. Despite the claims we were never able to see this stunt performed.

What we did see was our beloved Minera Andes taken over followed by an unseemly and rancorous shoving match with Hochschild Mining over the San Jose mine, a long and turgid legal dispute with TNR Gold over its back-in rights over part of the Los Azules project and a bunch of Nevada gold “assets” that supposedly had Closeology going for them.

With a billion dollar market cap and a pack of swivel-eyed loons as its most ardent supporters the stock had Short written all over it in letters as large as the Hollywood sign. The stock dutifully (and thankfully) drove off a cliff and we closed the theoretical position in our Model Portfolio and went off as happy campers. As for the embedded investors there was a long and painful wait as the chart below shows. Continue Reading →

Gold Mining: Investment ‘Must Resume’ as Reserves’ Life Shrinks 1/3rd – by Adrian Ash (Bullion – September 20, 2017)

GOLD MINING investment in finding new reserves “must resume” if global output isn’t to start falling, according to new analysis from a top consultancy.

Studying 11 of the world’s largest stockmarket-listed gold miners, specialist analysts Metals Focus say that current investment spending on exploration and new projects is “well below” the level needed to sustain current production.

“Without investment, the inventory does become depleted,” says the consultancy’s latest Precious Metals Weekly. While “not yet critical”, the productive life-time of underground reserves amongst today’s leading gold mining companies has sunk by one third from the peak of 27 years hit in 2013 after heavy investment to just 18 years today. Continue Reading →

Goldplat miner seeks to tame Africa risk – by Barbara Lewis (Reuters U.S. – September 19, 2017)

LONDON (Reuters) – Upheaval in Tanzania, where the government has made huge tax demands and seized minerals, has triggered changes in neighboring Kenya, which should reassure the industry, said the CEO of Goldplat (GLDP.L), which operates a gold mine there.

Chief Executive Gerard Kisbey-Green said he was nevertheless seeking to diversify his portfolio to cover more African nations and to expand into platinum group metals as he strives to offset African risk.

This year, the mining industry has reeled from South Africa’s proposed new mining charter and changes in Tanzania, where the government is locked in a tax dispute with Barrick Gold (ABX.TO) subsidiary Acacia (ACAA.L). Continue Reading →

Ajax mine: too close for comfort in Kamloops? – by Nelson Bennett (Business Vancouver – September 19, 2017)

Copper-gold mine is just two kilometres from the city limits

“I’m not against mining, but…” That line from a recent letter to the editor in Kamloops This Week pretty much sums up the tone of discussion around the Ajax copper-gold mine – a discussion that has been going on in Kamloops since 2011.

It’s a discussion that promises to get more heated in the coming weeks, now that the mine project is in the public comment period of a joint provincial-federal environmental review.

According to KGHM International Ltd., the Polish company that would develop the mine, Ajax would cost $1 billion to build, create 1,800 short-term jobs over a two-and-a-half-year construction period and 500 permanent jobs once the mine is in operation, and generate an annual payroll of $60 million. Continue Reading →

Peter Munk donates $100 million to the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre – by Julien Gignac (Toronto Star – September 20, 2017)

Peter Munk’s impassioned and gracious speech begins at the 33 minute mark.

Munk extolled Canadian graciousness he experienced when he emigrated here in the late 1940s. “You opened the door. You gave us everything,” he said, referring to Canada as “paradise.”

Peter Munk said his donation to a Toronto heart hospital is a “debt to repay” to Canada for taking in his family after the Second World War. On Tuesday, $100 million was contributed to the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre, said to be the largest contribution to a Canadian hospital in history.

In a long, impassioned speech, Munk, founder and former chairman of Barrick Gold Corporation, extolled Canadian graciousness he experienced when he emigrated here in the late 1940s.

“When you thank me for what I’ve done for Toronto, and you thank me for what I can do for this community, it doesn’t begin to express my immense gratitude for what this country has done for me and my family,” said Munk, who was born in Hungary. “You opened the door. You gave us everything,” he added, referring to Canada as “paradise.” Continue Reading →

OPINION: In the Amazon, a Catastrophic Gold Rush Looms – by Chris Feliciano Arnold (New York Times – September 18, 2017)

CONCORD, Calif. — Brazil’s interim president, Michel Temer, is willing to sacrifice millions of acres of rain forest in pursuit of a 16th-century boondoggle: fortunes of gold in the Amazon.

In August, Mr. Temer signed a decree to open a rain forest reserve — an area larger than Denmark — to commercial mining, threatening decades of progress on environmental protection and indigenous rights in the Amazon. The approximately 17,800-square-mile National Reserve of Copper and Associates, or Renca, which straddles the northern states of Pará and Amapá, was created by Brazil’s military dictatorship in 1984 to guard mineral resources from foreign exploitation as the country staggered toward democracy.

Today the reserve is a patchwork of conservation areas and indigenous lands. Its protected status has deterred the runaway development rampant elsewhere in the Amazon that has squelched biodiversity, destroyed indigenous communities and reduced millions of acres of rain forest to pastureland. Continue Reading →

Canada’s four newest gold mines – by Alisha Hiyate (Canadian Mining Journal – September 13, 2017)

It’s been tough for the last several years to get mine financing, but these four new Canadian gold mines, all coming on stream this year, prove that it hasn’t been impossible. The challenges aren’t over once the financing is in hand or the construction is complete, however. Read how these mines are dealing with the issues – big and small – that come with working the bugs out of a new operation.

BRUCEJACK – Pretium Resources – B.C.

Pretium Resources’ Brucejack mine, in B.C.’s Golden Triangle, achieved commercial production in July – only eight years after the super high grade Valley of the Kings deposit at the project was discovered.

The deposit was discovered in 2009 by Silver Standard Resources and a year later, Pretium Resources had its IPO and acquired the project. Ever since then, Pretium has been pushing hard to get the underground mine into production. In fact, the mine achieved commercial production three months early. Continue Reading →

ARCHIVES: The Murders In The Mine – by Katherine Laidlaw (Up – September 18, 2012)

Eighteen months on the picket line. Thirty-eight kilos of explosives. Nine men dead. 20 years passed.

It’s the story that made world news and changed a mining town forever. The Giant Mine strike stands as one of the longest and bloodiest in Canadian history, punctuated by one of the worst mass murders the country has ever seen. For those who lived through September 18, 1992, the scars have never healed. Here are their stories …

On May 22, 1992, a company called Royal Oak Mines Inc. locked out its workforce at Giant Mine in Yellowknife. The union, the local 4 chapter of the Canadian Association of Smelter and Allied Workers, and management couldn’t reach a settlement. Before the strike, it was a good, if finite, time to be a gold miner.

The average worker at Giant was pulling in $77,000 a year, and those clocking overtime were making more than $100,000. But the strike got dirty quickly as rumours swirled of Royal Oak CEO Peggy Witte’s intent to break the union. One thing she did break was an unwritten labour rule in Canada: you don’t bring in replacement workers. No mining company had done that in 45 years. Nevada-born Witte flew them in by helicopter the next day. Continue Reading →

Kinross to Invest $820 Million to Tread Water on Production – by Danielle Bochove (Bloomberg News – September 18, 2017)

Kinross Gold Corp. is spending more than $800 million to essentially tread water as — like many miners — it faces a future in which new gold assets are increasingly difficult to find and costly to develop.

The Canadian miner said Monday it will move ahead with expansions at mines in Mauritania and Nevada as part of efforts to maintain its production and lower costs.

“I don’t look at it as standing still,” Chief Executive Officer Paul Rollinson said Monday in an interview with Bloomberg Television. “Top line production will be similar but the cash flow that’s coming out of this asset will be dramatically different.” Continue Reading →

Kinross Gold to spend $1 bln to expand Mauritania, Nevada mines – by Nicole Mordant (Reuters U.K. – September 18, 2017)

Sept 18 (Reuters) – Kinross Gold Corp, as expected, gave the go-ahead on Monday to spend more than $1 billion to expand two of its gold mines, including its Tasiast mine in West Africa, but its shares fell as investors took profits after a stellar run this year.

Kinross okayed a second-phase, $590 million expansion at its Tasiast operation in Mauritania, which will help the company, the world’s fifth-biggest gold miner by output, maintain production levels as some of its other shorter-life mines show declines.

The Toronto-based miner also said it will spend $445 million to add five years of production to its Round Mountain mine in Nevada, currently scheduled to end in 2022. Continue Reading →