The gold price faltered despite rising geopolitical tension across Europe, and down with it went the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which lost 139.61 points over the week to close at 16,960.57. The S&P 500 fared better, closing almost even at 1,978.34 points.
Gold lost US$20 per oz. before gaining slightly to end at US$1,295 per oz. Copper made opposite moves, gaining early in the week before news of renewed supplies from Indonesia pushed prices back down. The metal finished the week at US$3.23 per lb. Zinc closed the week at US$1.096 per lb. — a three-year high.
Alcoa continued its impressive run, adding a few cents over the week to reach US$16.56. Alcoa shares have more than doubled since October. The aluminum price has helped in recent months, but the producer deserves credit for its success: against a backdrop of weak aluminum prices Alcoa has focused on its downstream business, which includes manufactured aluminum products such as truck wheels and aircraft fuselages.
Six months after suspending copper exports after a new sales tax and more restrictive export rules, Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold reached a deal with the Indonesian government to resume copper shipments in August. The company reported US$482 million in profits for the second quarter. Over the week Freeport shares sank 1% to close at US$37.99.
Arch Coal idled Cumberland River, a coal complex comprising two underground mines and related facilities that straddles the Virginia–Kentucky border. The company attributed the closure to the challenging metallurgical coal market. Arch Coal fell US23¢ over the week to US$2.89.
Cliffs Natural Resources ended the week up US25¢ at US$16.09 on news of reduced capital spending and lower projected production costs. The iron ore and coal producer lost US$2-million in the second quarter, but said its year-over-year capital spending was down 77%. It had been battling Casablanca Capital, which owns 5.2% of Cliffs’ stock and was on the verge of supplanting Cliffs’ board, after what Casablanca calls the “destruction of US$9 billion in value at Cliffs.” Shareholders sided with Casablance in the July 29 voting.
U.S. most active issues
|Alpha Nat Res*||ANR||29001||3.39||3.14||3.29||+||0.01|
|Cliffs Nat Rs*||CLF||28225||16.18||14.88||16.09||+||0.25|
U.S. greatest percentage change
|Oxford Res P*||OXF||76||0.94||0.75||0.85||+||16.4|
|Alum Cp China*||ACH||289||11.26||9.9||11.16||+||12.7|
|Gold Std Vnt*||GSV||298||0.74||0.67||0.74||+||10.7|
|Quest Rare Mn*||QRM||1147||0.24||0.22||0.22||–||6.3|
U.S. greatest value change
|Alliance Rs P*||ARLP||1136811||48.65||+||2.16|
|US Silica Hld*||SLCA||897109||60.45||+||2.16|
|Alum Cp China*||ACH||289449||11.16||+||1.26|