Canada’s benchmark index fell 1.06% to 16,090.27 during a shortened trading week. The S&P/TSX Global Mining Index fell 4.3% to 62.70 and the S&P/TSX Global Gold Index fell 2.9% to 152.66. The gold price didn’t fare much better, falling 0.38% to US$1,196.20.
Shares of Nevsun Resources rose 88¢ to $5.82 on news that it had agreed to a friendly takeover bid from Zijin Mining, valuing the company at $1.86 billion, or $6 per share. Zijin made its offer just a few weeks after Nevsun’s board of directors recommended shareholders reject a take-over bid from Lundin Mining that valued Nevsun at $4.75 per share.
Nevsun recently approved an extension to its Bisha zinc-copper mine in Eritrea that will keep the mine operating to 2022. It also announced a resource for its Timok Lower Zone, part of its Timok copper-gold project in Serbia. The joint venture with Freeport-McMoRan contains 1.7 billion inferred tonnes grading 0.86% copper and 0.18 gram gold, or 0.96% copper equivalent, for 31.5 billion lb. copper and 9.6 million oz. gold.
Shares of SolGold rose 28% to 48¢. In early September, BHP Billiton agreed to buy Guyana Goldstrike’s 6.1% interest in SolGold, representing 103.1 million shares, for 46¢ per share.
In a press release, BHP CEO Andrew Mackenzie said that “consistent with our positive long-term outlook, copper is a key exploration focus for BHP as we seek to replenish our resource base and grow.”
SolGold is focused on its Cascabel copper-gold project in northwest Ecuador. The company tabled a maiden resource in early 2018 at the project’s Alpala deposit outlining 430 million indicated tonnes grading 0.5% copper and 0.4 gram gold for 2.3 million tonnes copper and 6 million oz. gold as well as 650 million inferred tonnes at 0.4% copper and 0.3 gram gold for 2.9 million tonnes copper and 6.3 million oz. gold.
It has since drilled more than 100,000 metres at Cascabel.
Shares of Pershing Gold fell 20% to $1.37. They tumbled further the next trading week, falling as low as $1.06 per share on Sept. 10, 2018.
The abrupt decline came on news that the Securities and Exchange Commission is pressing charges against former company director Barry Honig — who resigned in August 2018 — and 10 others for frauds that earned them US$27 million.
“A group of prolific South Florida-based microcap fraudsters led by Barry Honig manipulated the share price of the stock of three companies in classic pump-and-dump schemes,” the SEC said in a press release. “After securing a substantial ownership interest in the companies, Honig and his associates engaged in illegal promotional activity and manipulative trading to artificially boost each issuer’s stock price and to give the stock the appearance of active trading volume.”
Pershing was not named in the SEC complaint, and says the charges are unrelated to the company.