Recent financial market reports are all showing that, with gold, the past is the present… again. Gold has historically been a safe haven during times of uncertainty and the markets are once again turning to gold in the face of the current global world health crisis. Last week, gold prices surged above $2,000 per ounce for the first time. An article on CNBC reported insider insights on gold, saying: “Gold prices could forge ahead to $4,000 per ounce in the next three years, but factors such as the development of a coronavirus vaccine and the November U.S. elections could change the fortunes of the precious metal, analysts say. This year, gold prices have shot to record highs not seen since September 2011. Investors have been fleeing to “safe haven” assets as the pandemic shows no signs of abating. Last week, gold process surged above $2,000 per ounce for the first time. “It’s quite easy to see gold going to $4,000,” Frank Holmes, CEO at investment firm U.S. Global Investors, told CNBC on Monday.” Active companies in the industry making moves include: U.S. Gold Corp. (NASDAQ: USAU), Barrick Gold Corporation (NYSE: GOLD) (TSX: ABX), Pretium Resources Inc. (NYSE:PVG) (TSX: PVG), Great Panther Mining Limited (NYSE: GPL) (TSX: GPR), Hecla Mining Company (NYSE: HL).
The CNBC article continued with: “He pointed to the trillions of dollars needed in stimulus to tide the U.S. economy during the coronavirus pandemic, and added that G-20 finance ministers and central banks are “working together like a cartel and they’re all printing trillions of dollars. We’ve not seen this level where central banks are printing money at a zero interest rate. At zero interest rates, gold becomes a very, very attractive asset class,” Holmes said. “A looser monetary policy generally means investors are more likely to seek out gold as an asset. When real yields go down, gold prices will go up, and vice versa. In such a scenario, the opportunity cost of holding gold, a non-yielding asset, is lower as investors are not foregoing interest that would be otherwise earned in yielding assets. Spot gold prices recently hit $2,028.32.”
U.S. Gold Corp. (NASDAQ: USAU) BREAKING NEWS: U.S. Gold Corp. Announces the Appointment of Senior Mining Industry Executive Mr. George Bee as President – U.S. Gold Corp. (the “Company”), a gold exploration and development company, is pleased to announce that Mr. George Bee has been appointed as President.
Mr. Bee is a senior mining industry executive, with deep mine development and operational experience. He has an extensive career advancing world-class gold mining projects in eight countries on three continents for both major and junior mining companies. Most recently in 2018 Mr. Bee concluded a third term with Barrick Gold as Senior VP Frontera District in Chile and Argentina to advance Pascua Lama feasibility as an underground mine. This capped a 16-year history with Barrick Gold with positions that included Mine Manager at Goldstrike during early development and operations, Operations Manager at Pierina Mine taking Pierina from construction to operations, and General Manager of Veladero developing the project from advanced exploration through permitting, feasibility and into production.
With his Barrick experience and having had eight years in South Africa working underground gold with Anglo American and open pit copper with Rio Tinto at Palabora Mine, Mr. Bee was well placed to advance projects internationally and domestically as a senior executive. This led to his appointment to various board and leadership positions at various companies. As COO of Aurelian Resources in 2007, he was in charge of project development for Fruta del Norte in Ecuador until Aurelian was acquired by Kinross Gold in 2008. Post-acquisition, moving on from Kinross, where he had also previously worked from 1996 to 1998 advancing projects in El Salvador and Nevada, he joined Andina Minerals as CEO in 2009. Andina and its 6 million-ounce Volcan Gold Project in Chile was acquired by Hochschild in 2013. By this time Mr. Bee had been appointed to the boards of Peregrine Metals and later Stillwater Mining and Jaguar Mining. In 2014, he also assumed the role of Chief Executive Officer of Jaguar Mining, operating mines in Brazil, as the company emerged from a financial restructuring process. Read this and more news for U.S. Gold at: https://www.financialnewsmedia.com/news-usau/
U.S. Gold Corp. also announced this week it has closed the acquisition of Northern Panther Resource Corporation (“Northern Panther”) in an all-share transaction pursuant to a merger agreement between Company and Northern Panther. Northern Panther, a Nevada corporation, has merged into a new subsidiary of U.S. Gold Corp. Northern Panther’s principal asset is the Challis Gold exploration project and it also has $2.5 million in cash. Concurrently with the closing of the merger, several Northern Panther shareholders have led a concurrent financing in which the Company received subscriptions for shares of its preferred stock and warrants up to $5.5 million, bringing a total of up to $8.0 million in additional capital to the Company.
Northern Panther’s Challis Gold Project provides U.S. Gold Corp. with its newest exploration project, located in Idaho. The founding group of Northern Panther has significant experience in growing mining companies with Challis Gold being a high-priority drill-ready target in a premier and growing U.S. gold district.
Additional mining industry related developments from around the markets:
Barrick Gold Corporation (NYSE: GOLD ) (TSX: ABX ) recently said it was on track to achieve annual production within its 2020 guidance range, despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the company said. Second quarter results show year-to-date gold production of 2.4 million ounces, at the mid-point of its 4.6 million to 5 million ounce annual guidance, driven by strong operating performances, particularly from Nevada Gold Mines (NGM) in the United States, Loulo-Gounkoto in Mali and Kibali in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Barricks copper portfolio continued to outperform with Lumwana in Zambia posting its best quarterly production in years.
Operating cash flow exceeded $1 billion for the quarter and free cash flow 1 was $522 million. Net earnings per share was 20 cents. Adjusted net earnings per share 2 was 23 cents, up 44% from Q1 and well ahead of the market consensus, debt net of cash was reduced by almost 25% to $1.4 billion from the end of Q1, and the quarterly dividend was increased by 14% to 8 cents per share. The quarterly dividend has more than doubled since the announcement of the merger between Barrick and Randgold in September 2018. The non-core asset disposal strategy, which is ongoing, has so far delivered value of $1.5 billion of which $1.25 billion was in cash.
Pretium Resources Inc. (NYSE:PVG) (TSX: PVG) recently announced operating and financial results for the second quarter and first-half 2020. “Brucejack delivered another profitable quarter with record free cash flow,” said Jacques Perron, President and Chief Executive Officer of Pretivm. “In the first six months of the year the mine produced 173,307 ounces of gold generating $293.1 million in revenue and $124.6 million in free cash flow, surpassing our full-year free cash flow target.”
“However, no quarter at Pretivm is considered a success unless it is accomplished safely. The loss of one of our employees, announced a few days ago, is a tragic reminder of the importance of safety in all mine operations. Our thoughts are with the employee’s family and loved ones. We will work tirelessly to ensure a safe workplace for everyone at Brucejack, which will directly support our efforts to operate efficiently and profitably.”
Great Panther Mining Limited (NYSE: GPL) (TSX: GPR) recently reported unaudited consolidated financial results for the second quarter of 2020 (Q2 2020) from its three wholly owned mines: Tucano in Brazil, and Topia and the Guanajuato Mine Complex (GMC) in Mexico. Great Panther will host a conference call and live webcast to discuss the results at 9.00am PDT/12.00pm EDT today, August 6, 2020. Dial-in and login details are provided at the end of this news release.
“The combination of a strong rise in the gold price and record production at our flagship Tucano mine, leading to a substantially lower AISC, drove a significant increase in cash flow from operating activities to a record $19.5 million for the second quarter of 2020,” stated President and CEO Rob Henderson. “This was an impressive result given the unprecedented challenges of managing COVID-19. We congratulate our teams at all Great Panther sites for this achievement.
Hecla Mining Company (NYSE: HL) recently announced second quarter 2020 financial and operating results. “Despite the pandemic, Hecla had its second highest quarterly silver production since 2016 which, combined with higher prices, resulted in almost 25% more revenue than a year ago and generated about $27 million of free cash flow,” said Phillips S. Baker, Jr., Hecla’s President and CEO. “I am extremely proud of our workforce’s adaptability and commitment in this challenging time which positions Hecla well to improve our cash flow generation in this higher silver and gold price environment.”
Mr. Baker continued, “Hecla currently produces about a third of all the silver mined in the U.S., almost three times larger than the next primary producer. That number is expected to grow as Lucky Friday ramps up. As the United States’ largest and oldest silver producer with America’s largest silver reserve and resource, Hecla gives investors unique exposure to higher silver prices.”