U.S. markets strengthen

Despite continued worries over Greek and Italian debt, U.S. companies have been reporting better-than-excepted third quarter results and that help to strengthen domestic markets for the Nov. 7-11 period. The Dow Jones was up 170 points to 12,135.68 points, the S&P 500 was up 10 points to 1,263.85, and the NASDAQ Composite was down, but only just slightly, as it was off 5 points to 2,678.75 points.

On the ination front, lower gasoline prices have helped ease concerns, but core ination is still holding on, which could give the Fed pause on further policy easing.

China Shen Zhou Mining & Resources made steady gains after announcing its third quarter results. The Beijing-based company said its revenues were 96% higher than last year at US$7.1 million, while gross profit was up 64.4% to US$2.9 million. Earnings per share from continuing operations came in at 2¢ per share – the same as it was in 2010. The company says growth was driven by increased global demand, higher prices for fluorite resources and the Chinese government’s policy of tightening restrictions for new entrants into the fluorite industry. Outside of fluorite the company is also involved in developing and producing zinc, lead and copper within China. The company’s shares were 21% higher for the period and finished at $2.18.

Quarterly results from Brigus Gold were also well received. The company’s shares were up 11% to $1.45 for the period despite producing less gold then it did for the same period last year. Still, the market seemed to focus on the fact that production levels in 2011 are trending in the right direction as the company produced 16,838 oz. of gold in the third quarter compared to 15,688 oz in the second quarter and just 8,772 ounces in the first quarter of the year. Of course the high gold price didn’t hurt the company’s cause either as it sold 17,119 oz. of gold at an average realized price of US$1,643 per oz.

The period’s big loser was Tanzanian Royalty Exploration, which saw its share price fall off 23% to finish the period at $2.84. That drop came despite no recent news or developments relating to the company. Following the sell-off the company issued a statement saying that there is no particular event other than a technical market situation that could explain the trading action. The company has exploration stage gold properties in Tanzania and last month it signed a joint venture agreement with State Mining Corporation of Tanzania on the Buckreef Gold project.


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