Strength in the resource stocks helped push the Toronto Stock Exchange composite index to record highs on Dec. 4 and 5.
The TSE 300 finished the 5-day report period at 4,722.53, up 48.35 points from the previous Tuesday close, a gain of 1% on the week.
The Canadian dollar was in a gentle slide against the greenback for most of the week, closing at US73.22 cents on Tuesday. It also slid against the pound and yen, but was stronger against other foreign currencies. There was little change to the yield on Treasury bills at the Tuesday auction, so the bank rate moved up only one basis point to 6.08%.
The gold price eased slightly during the trading week, reaching a US$387.50-per-oz. fix on the morning of Dec. 5, down $1.35 from the week before.
The fix had been as low as US$386.25 on the morning of Dec. 4. Platinum backed away $1 to a fix of US$414 per oz.
Silver was the lone winner among the precious metals, picking up 4 cents to $5.26.
The TSE gold and precious metals sub-index suffered three straight days of losses, but rallied on Dec. 4 and 5 to close at 10,695.38 — 87.77 points, or 0.8%, higher. Barrick Gold was up 62 cents to $37.12 and Placer Dome, 38 cents to $34.62. Kinross Gold was also active, but slipped 38 cents to $11.12. Teck B lost 88 cents to close at $26 and Cambior tacked on 12 cents to finish at $15.38.
Except for nickel, which lost 10 cents to US$3.61 per lb., base metals were steady. The TSE metals and minerals subindex also had a rally on Dec. 4 and 5, following three days of losses, and climbed 31.65 points, or 0.6%, on the week. The sub-index saw a closing value of 5,211.07.
Among nickel issues, Inco dropped 62 cents to finish the report period at $48.88, Falconbridge was unchanged at $31.25, and Diamond Fields Resources bucked the nickel price trend, gaining $1.75 to close at $25.75. Other metal miners were broadly lower: Inmet, trading actively, lost 12 cents to close at $10.50, and Noranda was down 38 cents to $28.62. Cameco was off as well, closing $1 lower at $50.
Montreal-listed Auriginor Exploration was up 11 cents to 41 cents on the news that it had entered final negotiations to buy an 80% interest in the Jatoba gold mine in Brazil’s Mato Grosso state. The company announced plans to bulk-sample the mine tailings with a view to re-milling them by means of a more efficient extraction process.
Orbite Exploration announced that it was examining joint-venture opportunities with a U.S. company that has a property in the Fairbanks region of Alaska. Orbite was up 12 cents to 26 cents.
Greenstone Resources was up 20 cents to $4.20 on a volume of just under 4 million shares. The company announced that warrants to buy Greenstone shares at $3 and $3.35 per share had been exercised by the Emerging Markets Gold Fund, following placement of the warrants in September 1995. The fund had also converted a US$2-million debenture into shares at $3.35. It sold 4.7 million Greenstone shares on the open market and holds another 2 million.
TVI Pacific traded heavily, with 5.1 million shares changing hands during the report period. The issue posted a gain of 42 cents to settle at $2.18 over our report period.
TVI has recently announced results at its Rapu Rapu property in the Philippines, and has several projects
in advanced stages, including the Kingking porphyry copper-gold deposit, where targets are being tested for possible extensions of the mineral reserves, and the Canatuan polymetallic sulphide deposit, where a final feasibility study is nearly complete.