U.S. equities posted another strong trading week with the Dow Jones Industrial Average closing above the 14,000 mark for the first time since October 2007 (up 0.82% to 1,4009.79) and the S&P finishing above the 15,000-point level for the second time in as many weeks (rising 0.68% at 1,513.17). Encouraging economic data continued to drive more cash into equities and out of bonds. The U.S. economy added 157,000 new jobs in January and revised data for the months of November and December from the Labor Department showed that 127,000 more jobs were created in those two months than had been reported originally. At the same time, the index of national factory activity climbed to 53.1 in January from 50.2 in December — its highest in nine months. The Philadelphia Gold and Silver index edged up 0.74% to finish the trading week at 151.94.
Shares of Augusta Resources surged 17.7% to US$2.79 on news it had received the air quality permit for its Rosemont Copper project. The permit from the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality is the seventh major permit the company has received. The only major permit remaining is the Clean Water Act Section 404 from the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers. Rosemont hosts a large copper/molybdenum reserve that would account for about 10% of all U.S. copper output once in production, the company says.
Alexco Resources jumped 14.5% to US$4.66 per share after the company completed an updated resource estimate for its Flame & Moth discovery in the Keno Hill Silver district of the Yukon. Since Alexco published its initial resource estimate in June 2012, the company has drilled another 8,752 metres in 43 holes, enhancing the indicated silver resource from 11.1 million ounces to 22.9 million ounces. Indicated resources now stand at 1.38 million tonnes grading 516 grams silver per tonne, 0.42 gram gold per tonne, 1.72% lead and 5.7% zinc for 22.86 million ounces of contained silver. Inferred resources add 107,000 tonnes grading 313 grams silver, 0.27 gram gold, 0.86% lead and 4.21% zinc, for 1.08 million oz. contained silver. The Flame & Moth deposit’s silver inventory is now more than twice as big as the original pre-mining indicated silver resource for the company’s Bellekeno mine, now in its third year of production. In addition, the Flame & Moth deposit remains open down dip and down plunge to the south.
AngloGold Ashanti climbed US$1.99 to US$29.30 per share. The gold producer told shareholders its 70%-owned Tropicana gold project in Western Australia remains on schedule to start production in the December 2013 quarter. Life-of-mine production is estimated at 3.6 million oz. gold at a cash cost of A$710-730 (US$738-$758) per oz.
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