U.S. equities stayed in positive territory despite U.S. consumer sentiment in September hitting its lowest level in 12 months, flat domestic producer prices in August, and worries about China’s slowing growth and shrinking imports (data for August showed the Asian juggernaut’s imports fell 13.8% year-on-year, in the tenth straight monthly decline). The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 2.1% to 16,433.09, and the S&P 500 Index climbed 2.1% to 1,961.05. The gains were driven in part by news that Beijing would remove tax on dividend incomes for investors who hold stocks for more than a year, and news that China’s Finance Ministry would strengthen fiscal policy, increase infrastructure spending and accelerate tax reform. The Philadelphia Gold and Silver Index fell 0.7% to 45.03.
An updated preliminary economic assessment of its wholly owned Ann Mason copper-molybdenum porphyry deposit in Nevada lifted the shares of Entree Gold by 7.4% to US26¢. The study incorporates the results of an infill drill program and a new resource estimate. The proposed open-pit and conventional sulphide flotation operation — at 120,000 tonnes per day over a 21-year mine life — would serve up a 13.7% post-tax internal rate return and US$770-million net present value at a 7.5% discount rate. The base case uses US$3 per lb. copper, US$11 per lb. molybdenum, US$1,200 per oz. gold and US$20 per oz. silver. Development capital costs could reach US$1.4 billion, including a US$103-million contingency. Average life-of-mine cash costs — net of by-product sales and including taxes — would come to US$1.74 per lb. copper, while average life-of-mine all-in-sustaining costs would average US$1.81 per lb. copper, net of by-product sales and including taxes.
Shares of Harmony Gold Mining dropped 9.5% to US69¢. The company received a notice from the New York Stock Exchange that the trading price of its American Depository Receipts has fallen below the exchange’s continued listing standard. Under NYSE rules, the minimum average closing price for Harmony’s ADRs cannot fall below US$1 per share for 30 consecutive trading days.