TSX rises, Feb 4-8: RNC, Wallbridge and First Quantum

Canada’s benchmark index rose 1% to end the trading week at 15,663.33. The S&P/TSX Global Mining Index rose 0.65% to 71.90, and the S&P/TSX Global Gold Index rose 1.3% to 192.46. The gold price fell 0.2% to US$1,314.

Shares of RNC Minerals rose 20% to 72¢. The company recently announced results from 46 underground holes totalling more than 5,700 metres drilled at its Beta Hunt mine in Australia. The company infill-drilled the mine’s A Zone and Western Flanks, and tested sedimentary layers for gold mineralization similar to its Father’s Day vein discovery in 2018.

At its Western Flanks shear zone, the company intersected 1,017.3 grams gold per tonne over 2 metres, including 7,621 grams gold over 0.27 metre within 45 metres of its underground development. The company says this is the highest-grade gold reported since 2017, and could mean that the new sedimentary layer holds multiple gold discoveries.

Highlights from the A Zone include 119.37 grams gold over 6 metres, including 1,406 grams gold over 0.5 metre, as well as 3.73 grams gold over 12 metres. The company is waiting for results from another 37 holes totalling nearly 4,200 metres. The company intends to finish a 40,000-metre program designed to infill and extend both the A Zone and Western Flanks.

Shares of Wallbridge Mining rose 19.5% to 25¢, after the company announced it had recovered and sold more than 13,300 oz. gold from a 35,000-tonne bulk sample it took at its 100%-owned Fenelon gold property in Quebec. The company has processed 25,000 tonnes of mineralized material so far at an average grade of 17.43 grams gold to produce 14,000 oz. gold. It expects to process all 35,000 tonnes at 19 to 22 grams gold per tonne, and produce 21,000 to 24,000 oz. gold.

The company has dewatered Fenelon and rehabilitated its infrastructure. It began ramp development in June 2018 and stope production in August 2018. It finished building the ramp in January 2019, and says it is mining its final stopes.  It intends to drill 50,000 to 75,000 metres at Fenelon targeting underground resource expansion in 2019, while advancing permits. It recently lowered its debt to US$3 million. Wallbridge acquired Fenelon in 2016 and tabled a prefeasibility study for the project in 2017.

Shares of First Quantum Minerals slipped $1.10 to $13.72 after the miner signed a $2.7-billion term loan and revolving credit facility to replace its $1.5-billion revolving credit facility. The new facility comprises a $1.5-billion term loan facility and a $1.2-billion revolving credit facility. The company recently resumed copper production at its Cobre las Cruces plant in southwestern Spain after a land slippage at the operation in January 2019 forced management to shut down the open pit and hydrometallurgical complex. No one was injured during the slippage.


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