VANCOUVER — The S&P TSX Venture Composite Index rallied to its highest level since early July during the August 13 to 17 period, rising 42 points or 3.6% en route to 1,233.17 weekly close. Spot gold rose to US$1615.80 per oz. to finish the week, and silver continued to rally before closing at US$28.09 per oz. U.S. Industrial production beat estimates, rising 0.6% in July, and the European Central Bank reaffirmed its commitment to fund bond purchases to ease liquidity tensions in the European Union.
Vancouver-based Reservoir Minerals gained 51¢ during the week before closing at $1.96. The company announced that Freeport-McMoRan Exploration Corporation had exercised an earn-in option to acquire a 55% equity stake in the Timok copper-gold project in Serbia. Freeport has taken operational control of the project, and announced it would sole fund expenditures through the delivery of a feasibility study.
High Desert Gold surged 121% or 15¢ per share during the week before closing at 26¢ on the back of 4.6 million unit trade volumes. The company released results on two drill holes at its 70%-owned Gold Springs project on the Nevada-Utah border on August 16. Collared at the Grey Eagle target, the results were highlighted by 21.4 metres grading 5.6 grams gold per tonne and 32.4 grams silver in hole 12-002.
Balmoral Resources gained 38% or 25¢ per share after releasing drill results from its Martiniere gold property in Quebec that featured bonanza grade results. The company discovered a new gold-bearing structure in the footwall of its Bug Lake gold zone, with highlights including: 3.9 metres averaging 272.4 grams gold in hole 12-29, which included a bonanza cut of 0.55 metres grading 1530 grams gold. Balmoral closed the week at 91¢.
Royalty and precious-metal streaming outfit Sandstorm Gold posted strong gains, rising 54¢ during the week before closing at $9.73 on 7.6 million share trade volumes. Sandstorm is in the process of securing a joint listing on the New York Stock Exchange, and continued to post record results during the second quarter. The company sold 9,259 oz. of gold during the quarter and achieved an operating cash flow of US$11.3 million.
Junior producer SilverCrest Mines had a solid week, rising 51¢ on the back of operational consistency at its Santa Elena silver mine in Mexico during the second quarter. SilverCrest’s cash-flow from operations jumped 148% to US$7.2 million and costs per silver equivalent oz. dropped 16% to US$6.94. The company sold 637,050 silver equivalent oz. during the quarter and reported a 64% increase in working capital to US$29.6 million.
Gold explorer Canamex Resources recorded the highest trade volumes for the week, as 14 million shares changed hands following an update of the company’s exploration activities at its Bruner gold project in Nevada. Canamex dropped 42% or 13¢ on the high volumes, with reverse-circulation drilling highlighted by 6.1 metres grading 1.26 grams gold in hole 1202.