Precious metals began 2021 on a positive note: gold, silver and palladium prices returned to higher levels while platinum hit fresh four-year highs.

Some of those gains have been unwound, but Metals Focus says the yellow metal is still expected to approach $2,300 later this year – an all-time high.

Here’s why.

 

  1. COVID-19 and China are still a thing

When uncertainty and volatility abound, gold shines.

The ongoing pandemic and policy-makers’ reactions to the crisis will continue to boost investors’ appetite for safe haven assets such as gold.

“In the near-term, the rapid spread of COVID-19 and the threat of new variants of the virus mean that restrictive measures will remain in place in many countries, especially in Europe, for a longer period than previous anticipated,” Metals Focus says.

“More importantly, with slower than expected roll-out of the vaccine, a return to normality seems unlikely to emerge until the second half of this year.”

And geopolitical risk is still high.

Even under the Biden Administration the US-China relationship is likely to remain difficult, albeit less volatile, while geopolitical risks elsewhere are still abundant, says Metals Search.

  1. Low interest rates make gold attractive

Lower interest rates – designed to help economies regain growth momentum — typically benefit precious metals by reducing the ‘opportunity cost’ of holding other, currently low yielding assets.

“Ultimately, this will reduces bonds’ effectiveness as a portfolio diversifier, which will continue to push long-term investors towards gold,” Metals Focus says.

  1. The inflation situation

A Democrat clean sweep in the US should be positive for gold prices, given the potential for larger fiscal spending and hence their implications on future inflation, says Metals Focus.

Inflationary expectations, sparked by the huge amounts of money flowing into the system, were a key driver of the post-2008 gold rally, it says.

“Even though high inflation never materialised, many investors feel that, this time around, the extent of monetary and fiscal accommodation may have a greater likelihood of driving prices higher,” it says.

“This remains the case, even if the most recent “risk-on” move has put short-term pressure on the gold market.

“We can also not ignore still ballooning sovereign debt levels and already high systemic risks.”

 

Winners & Losers

Here’s how ASX-listed gold stocks performed January 4 – January 8 [intraday].

Scroll or swipe to reveal table. Click headings to sort. Best viewed on a laptop:

CODE NAME 1 WEEK CHANGE 1 MONTH CHANGE 1 YEAR CHANGE MARKET CAP
VKA Viking Mines 64.3% 91.7% 308.3% $ 19,325,019.91
AAU Antilles Gold 53.3% 61.4% 162.9% $ 17,953,031.71
PUR Pursuit Minerals 52.4% 28.0% 587.0% $ 25,009,503.18
RMX Red Mount Min 50.0% 63.6% 260.0% $ 20,363,804.80
ANL Amani Gold 50.0% 50.0% -25.0% $ 18,773,993.49
S2R S2 Resources 46.2% 8.6% 58.3% $ 59,829,324.01
NAE New Age Exploration 40.0% 7.7% 250.0% $ 16,618,425.74
TMX Terrain Minerals 37.5% -15.4% 175.0% $ 8,093,371.10
BNZ Benzmining 36.0% 0.0% 0.0% $ 6,400,000.00
CLA Celsius Resources 32.6% 38.6% 454.5% $ 47,593,302.94
DCN Dacian Gold 31.7% 50.0% -46.1% $ 292,166,990.85
AMG Ausmex Mining 31.3% 28.6% -16.0% $ 31,758,961.98
GED Golden Deeps 30.0% -7.1% -45.8% $ 10,069,973.49
KRM Kingsrose Mining 28.6% 32.4% 45.2% $ 31,390,316.14
FFX Firefinch 27.8% 48.4% 194.9% $ 156,381,450.20
FFX Firefinch 27.8% 48.4% 194.9% $ 156,381,450.20
SPQ Superior Resources 27.3% -12.5% 148.9% $ 20,656,103.37
GTR Gti Resources 26.1% 26.1% 262.5% $ 19,335,539.94
ARV Artemis Resources 26.1% 20.8% 480.0% $ 164,830,825.97
MSR Manas Res 25.0% 7.1% 275.0% $ 20,702,051.99
VAN Vango Mining 23.8% 5.4% -54.1% $ 76,290,659.64
ONX Orminex 23.1% 18.5% -58.4% $ 17,251,269.38
SBR Sabre Resources 22.2% 10.0% 450.0% $ 18,513,700.14
FML Focus Minerals 20.6% 24.2% 60.8% $ 73,099,426.00
RGL Riversgold 20.4% 37.2% 490.0% $ 22,557,615.54
GSN Great Southern 20.0% 31.5% 39.1% $ 43,222,189.90
VRC Volt Resources 20.0% 9.1% 9.1% $ 25,953,937.21
CST Castile Resources 19.6% 19.6% 0.0% $ 61,910,137.51
A1G African Gold . 19.6% 48.6% 72.7% $ 12,454,130.52
OKR Okapi Resources 19.2% 16.3% 142.2% $ 10,792,818.00
HMX Hammer Metals 18.8% 2.7% 72.7% $ 29,121,080.43
ARL Ardea Resources 18.5% 6.7% -11.1% $ 57,451,761.90
KTA Krakatoa Resources 18.5% -1.3% 92.5% $ 20,363,350.00
PKO Peako Limited 17.4% 12.5% 20.4% $ 5,185,462.78
MEU Marmota Limited 17.4% 12.5% 100.0% $ 49,395,218.19
HWK Hawkstone Mng 16.7% 5.0% 75.0% $ 15,871,522.19
CTO Citigold Corp 16.7% 0.0% 250.0% $ 38,089,424.93
ADV Ardiden 16.7% 10.5% 425.0% $ 44,794,299.56
CHN Chalice Mining 16.7% 13.5% 1585.2% $ 1,513,452,178.56
AAJ Aruma Resources 16.7% 0.0% 180.0% $ 11,125,897.33
M2R Miramar 16.1% -5.8% 0.0% $ 14,146,219.20
AAR Anglo Australian 16.0% -3.3% 52.6% $ 88,351,257.60
SRN Surefire Rescs NL 16.0% -40.8% 1060.0% $ 28,101,313.03
CEL Challenger Exp 15.9% 8.0% 97.9% $ 132,582,522.96
CWX Carawine Resources 15.6% -5.5% 10.6% $ 27,222,475.50
RDS Redstone Resources 15.4% 25.0% 87.5% $ 7,411,820.22
AQI Alicanto Minerals 15.0% -11.5% 173.8% $ 39,230,095.32
BAT Battery Minerals 15.0% 4.5% 283.3% $ 44,908,017.90
STK Strickland Metals 15.0% -16.4% 130.0% $ 19,372,969.97
SI6 SI6 Metals 14.3% 39.1% 966.7% $ 43,508,910.03
LNY Laneway Res 14.3% 14.3% 14.3% $ 22,650,395.60
ANX Anax Metals 13.6% -23.1% 350.0% $ 13,449,908.45
PRX Prodigy Gold NL 13.0% -5.5% -21.2% $ 31,353,890.72
HXG Hexagon Energy 12.7% -6.1% -3.1% $ 18,674,730.27
NAG Nagambie Resources 12.5% -6.3% 40.6% $ 22,496,955.57
AVW Avira Resources 12.5% 0.0% 350.0% $ 12,375,360.00
OKU Oklo Resources 12.2% 12.2% 48.4% $ 113,406,707.70
BDC Bardoc Gold 12.2% 24.3% 12.2% $ 157,535,321.22
KCN Kingsgate Consolid. 12.0% 28.1% 138.4% $ 233,012,718.20
TAM Tanami Gold NL 11.9% 22.1% 135.0% $ 113,984,413.46
SMI Santana Minerals 11.8% -2.6% -32.1% $ 20,525,874.48
CGN Crater Gold Min 11.8% -9.5% 58.3% $ 23,322,421.47
BAR Barra Resources 11.5% -3.3% 26.1% $ 19,650,634.93
TNR Torian Resources 10.7% 3.3% 258.8% $ 23,913,080.92
KZR Kalamazoo Resources 10.1% 20.2% 107.9% $ 85,766,639.27
GMR Golden Rim Resources 10.0% 4.8% -8.3% $ 19,704,760.58
MAT Matsa Resources 10.0% -8.3% -8.3% $ 28,470,404.45
VMC Venus Metals 10.0% -8.3% 18.9% $ 36,258,883.92
AUT Auteco Minerals 10.0% 10.0% 1275.0% $ 172,389,682.96
BRB Breaker Res NL 10.0% 22.2% -25.4% $ 71,685,004.38
CXU Cauldron Energy 9.8% 21.6% 125.0% $ 19,711,978.53
AXE Archer Materials 9.7% 5.6% 264.5% $ 119,322,369.38
NVA Nova Minerals 9.4% 2.9% 207.0% $ 283,890,929.99
TIE Tietto Minerals 9.3% -6.8% 46.4% $ 183,590,734.68
MTH Mithril Resources 9.1% 26.3% 140.0% $ 50,089,803.50
TMZ Thomson Resources 9.1% 37.9% 386.1% $ 39,373,536.75
ARN Aldoro Resources 9.1% 12.5% 9.1% $ 12,280,448.56
RVR Red River Resources 8.9% 10.9% 103.3% $ 160,510,053.77
KWR Kingwest Resources 8.8% 8.8% 2.7% $ 28,433,363.73
KAI Kairos Minerals 8.8% -2.6% 296.3% $ 60,322,511.41
SVL Silver Mines Limited 8.7% 22.0% 117.4% $ 264,762,502.11
AGS Alliance Resources 8.6% 6.8% 95.0% $ 33,877,015.20
GNM Great Northern 8.3% -23.5% 44.4% $ 11,802,954.85
OBM Ora Banda Mining 8.2% 11.9% 90.4% $ 282,144,355.60
ADN Andromeda Metals 8.2% 24.0% 561.1% $ 635,054,708.97
AMI Aurelia Metals 8.1% 10.7% 11.3% $ 586,305,099.38
MHC Manhattan Corp 8.0% -10.0% 440.0% $ 35,809,524.71
LCL Los Cerros Limited 8.0% 22.7% 101.5% $ 60,941,337.86
WCN White Cliff Min 8.0% 8.0% 350.0% $ 14,479,775.77
AWV Anova Metals 7.7% 3.7% 165.2% $ 40,126,637.60
BNR Bulletin Res 7.6% 16.4% 240.0% $ 14,522,738.99
AME Alto Metals 7.5% 0.0% 163.2% $ 41,971,922.00
PRS Prospech Limited 7.5% -4.4% 0.0% $ 13,979,426.64
MRZ Mont Royal Resources 7.4% 5.5% 16.0% $ 9,577,084.70
DRE Drednought Resources 7.3% 0.0% 214.3% $ 47,498,796.26
AQX Alice Queen 7.1% 3.4% 11.1% $ 33,832,270.64
GBZ GBM Rsources 7.1% 7.1% 336.9% $ 60,397,577.10
YRL Yandal Resources 7.0% 2.2% 94.6% $ 42,729,648.86
PNR Pantoro Limited 6.8% 11.9% 56.7% $ 338,015,574.72
MKR Manuka Resources. 6.8% -14.1% 0.0% $ 38,371,888.53
BC8 Black Cat Syndicate 6.4% 6.4% 112.9% $ 82,753,250.25
GRL Godolphin Resources 6.4% -2.0% -3.8% $ 21,021,550.25
RED Red 5 Limited 5.8% 10.0% -17.9% $ 551,854,339.96
DGO DGO Gold Limited 5.7% -4.2% 211.6% $ 216,977,656.60
SIH Sihayo Gold 5.6% 5.6% 9.3% $ 73,709,228.26
NCM Newcrest Mining 5.4% -0.3% -11.7% $ 22,528,794,773.06
BBX BBX Minerals 5.4% 1.7% 126.9% $ 128,838,257.70
RML Resolution Minerals 5.3% 2.6% -20.0% $ 11,560,870.78
NUS Nusantara Resources 5.3% 0.0% -10.4% $ 64,196,441.96
FAU First Au 5.3% 0.0% 81.8% $ 10,761,692.72
NML Navarre Minerals 5.0% 0.0% 75.0% $ 117,205,562.47
DEG De Grey Mining 4.9% -3.6% 1872.2% $ 1,380,688,265.88
MKG Mako Gold 4.8% -8.3% 57.1% $ 28,296,576.22
CBY Canterbury Resources 4.8% 0.0% -50.0% $ 8,801,499.50
RSG Resolute Mining 4.7% 9.5% -32.3% $ 921,750,409.51
EMR Emerald Resources 4.7% 41.3% 117.1% $ 448,395,570.09
PAK Pacific American Hld 4.5% 4.5% -19.1% $ 7,235,452.70
SAR Saracen Mineral 4.5% 4.3% 41.1% $ 5,538,228,575.00
RND Rand Mining 4.4% 0.0% -22.7% $ 114,282,102.50
OAU Ora Gold Limited 4.3% 4.3% 20.0% $ 20,180,285.33
TBR Tribune Res 4.3% 1.6% 13.6% $ 325,826,758.17
E2M E2 Metals 4.3% -10.3% 238.9% $ 80,067,247.21
REZ Resourc & En Grp 4.3% -7.5% 226.7% $ 21,152,358.66
AUC Ausgold Limited 4.3% -2.0% 250.0% $ 62,416,777.97
PNM Pacific Nickel Mines 4.2% -20.6% -50.0% $ 7,488,729.40
AL8 Alderan Resource 4.2% 35.9% 400.0% $ 37,242,636.50
BYH Bryah Resources 4.1% 18.8% 72.7% $ 11,669,078.61
HRN Horizon Gold 4.1% 15.9% 158.6% $ 45,655,348.44
GBR Greatbould Resources 4.1% -3.8% 43.4% $ 9,402,988.50
KSN Kingston Resources 3.8% -8.5% 50.0% $ 73,226,105.94
SLR Silver Lake Resource 3.6% 3.3% 37.9% $ 1,688,216,728.23
NST Northern Star 3.6% 2.9% 10.5% $ 9,862,206,522.63
MML Medusa Mining 3.6% 2.2% -6.2% $ 166,235,440.80
GML Gateway Mining 3.3% -8.8% 82.4% $ 62,905,954.19
AOP Apollo Consolidated 3.2% -3.0% 20.8% $ 87,456,066.75
TLM Talisman Mining 3.1% -9.1% 3.1% $ 19,595,980.43
AGG AngloGold Ashanti 3.0% 3.0% -6.3% $ 562,900,997.15
AZS Azure Minerals 2.9% -30.5% 282.1% $ 166,366,289.34
SNG Siren Gold 2.9% -2.0% 0.0% $ 42,980,173.20
MEI Meteoric Resources 2.7% 28.3% 120.0% $ 102,421,140.04
GOR Gold Road Res 2.6% 9.2% 0.4% $ 1,223,095,399.72
SKY SKY Metals 2.6% -11.4% 107.4% $ 46,863,467.32
MTC Metalstech 2.4% 2.4% 452.6% $ 30,779,203.98
EMU EMU NL 2.4% -12.2% 2.4% $ 15,325,433.75
RXL Rox Resources 2.0% 0.0% 92.6% $ 102,491,423.15
MVL Marvel Gold Limited 2.0% -3.7% -47.7% $ 26,449,491.02
NXM Nexus Minerals 1.9% -5.4% 170.4% $ 30,518,958.88
SBM St Barbara Limited 1.9% -6.1% -14.4% $ 1,721,073,798.16
RRL Regis Resources 1.9% -0.3% -11.8% $ 1,971,304,254.15
WWI West Wits Mining 1.4% 4.3% 554.5% $ 89,995,441.88
MGV Musgrave Minerals 1.4% -8.5% 316.7% $ 193,153,590.10
SSR SSR Mining Inc. 1.3% 2.4% 0.0% $ 449,583,529.08
RMS Ramelius Resources 1.2% -1.7% 26.3% $ 1,423,870,388.16
CAI Calidus Resources 1.0% -12.8% 96.2% $ 169,765,887.88
WAF West African Res 1.0% 7.7% 139.8% $ 962,157,497.37
MAU Magnetic Resources 0.9% -0.8% 143.3% $ 255,082,224.86
WGX Westgold Resources. 0.8% 4.3% 14.7% $ 1,127,455,018.20
CYL Catalyst Metals 0.5% -20.8% -30.8% $ 201,416,765.94
TTM Titan Minerals 0.0% 0.0% -31.4% $ 131,037,035.55
ZNC Zenith Minerals 0.0% -10.3% 106.3% $ 38,266,803.90
TSC Twenty Seven Co. 0.0% 0.0% -40.0% $ 13,777,752.38
TRM Truscott Mining Corp 0.0% 0.0% 125.0% $ 2,302,947.79
THR Thor Mining PLC 0.0% -8.1% 112.5% $ 7,370,808.66
SFM Santa Fe Minerals 0.0% -4.1% 34.3% $ 6,844,966.17
PDI Predictive Disc 0.0% 7.0% 587.2% $ 64,072,378.57
MLS Metals Australia 0.0% 0.0% 100.0% $ 8,381,807.15
MCT Metalicity Limited 0.0% 0.0% 419.2% $ 31,396,383.34
KGM Kalnorth Gold 0.0% 0.0% 116.7% $ 11,625,120.78
KAU Kaiser Reef 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% $ 10,957,250.41
ERM Emmerson Resources 0.0% 2.6% -34.2% $ 37,662,602.17
DTR Dateline Resources 0.0% 25.0% 0.0% $ 20,525,195.19
CHZ Chesser Resources 0.0% 17.1% 224.3% $ 103,400,141.36
CDT Castle Minerals 0.0% -10.0% 0.0% $ 7,325,008.18
AYM Australia United Min 0.0% -11.1% 100.0% $ 14,740,619.88
DDD 3D Resources Limited 0.0% 0.0% 100.0% $ 16,269,174.41
WMX Wiluna Mining Corp 0.0% -2.8% 6.9% $ 164,146,824.80
CY5 Cygnus Gold Limited 0.0% 2.9% 361.5% $ 19,452,617.64
ENR Encounter Resources 0.0% 5.9% 28.6% $ 55,223,648.03
RDN Raiden Resources 0.0% 11.1% 400.0% $ 26,473,788.61
CAZ Cazaly Resources 0.0% -4.2% 100.0% $ 16,591,890.28
HRZ Horizon 0.0% 0.0% 22.2% $ 62,477,272.00
DAU Dampier Gold 0.0% -20.0% 136.4% $ 17,786,197.78
SLZ Sultan Resources 0.0% -8.3% 272.9% $ 15,645,237.53
NPM Newpeak Metals 0.0% 16.7% 16.7% $ 16,338,568.78
EVN Evolution Mining -0.5% -0.7% 29.6% $ 8,628,768,779.25
PRU Perseus Mining -0.6% 13.4% 15.9% $ 1,636,785,921.45
SVY Stavely Minerals -0.6% -17.4% -14.2% $ 215,293,197.90
CDV Cardinal Reso -0.9% -1.4% 213.2% $ 595,926,904.68
NES Nelson Resources. -1.0% 54.7% 95.2% $ 11,480,214.20
GWR GWR Group -1.1% 74.0% 437.0% $ 126,719,238.24
STN Saturn Metals -1.5% -7.2% 103.2% $ 69,417,286.40
G88 Golden Mile Res -1.8% 10.0% 1.9% $ 7,381,099.68
TAR Taruga Minerals -1.9% 2.0% 325.0% $ 24,231,679.82
SAU Southern Gold -2.0% 11.4% -41.7% $ 27,732,738.28
BGL Bellevue Gold -2.0% -19.3% 103.2% $ 957,597,157.13
MOH Moho Resources -2.2% -10.2% 76.0% $ 8,431,485.21
CMM Capricorn Metals -2.2% 5.1% 41.9% $ 619,154,652.60
GMN Gold Mountain -2.3% -4.4% -41.9% $ 31,981,784.23
MEG Megado -2.4% 14.3% 0.0% $ 8,404,693.29
GSM Golden State Mining -2.6% 0.0% 183.6% $ 10,760,878.00
MZZ Matador Mining -2.7% 4.3% 56.5% $ 65,534,222.22
ALK Alkane Resources -2.9% -9.1% 48.4% $ 562,642,416.00
TSO Tesoro Resources -3.4% -5.1% 588.8% $ 136,755,613.12
PUA Peak Minerals -3.4% 0.0% 135.2% $ 17,211,611.09
BCN Beacon Minerals -5.1% 0.0% -7.5% $ 106,080,432.90
DTM Dart Mining NL -5.3% -10.0% 106.7% $ 18,489,913.06
ALY Alchemy Resource -5.6% -10.5% 58.1% $ 12,100,382.15
TRY Troy Resources -6.1% 5.7% -5.1% $ 71,210,994.19
DCX Discovex Resources -6.3% 25.0% 25.0% $ 9,569,312.61
GIB Gibb River Diamonds -7.1% -52.7% 44.4% $ 17,132,265.05
BRV Big River Gold -8.3% -25.4% 158.8% $ 69,686,171.88
NSM Northstaw -8.4% -9.4% 0.0% $ 17,200,000.00
MDI Middle Island Res -8.8% 22.1% 252.7% $ 45,462,640.88
FFR Firefly Resources -8.8% -6.1% 216.8% $ 46,467,377.46
NWM Norwest Minerals -10.0% -10.0% -50.0% $ 9,795,616.11
LCY Legacy Iron Ore -11.1% 471.4% 1900.0% $ 256,136,779.20
LEX Lefroy Exploration -13.0% 0.0% 8.1% $ 24,001,933.40
HAW Hawthorn Resources -18.5% 15.8% 88.2% $ 36,686,717.43
XTC Xantippe Resources -20.0% 0.0% 0.0% $ 10,186,411.01
GUL Gullewa Limited -23.1% -9.1% 257.1% $ 18,237,310.00

 

VIKING MINES (ASX:VKA) +64%

It was a news-heavy week for this $20m market cap minnow.

On Monday it appointed new chief exec Julian Woodcock – a geologist with a proven history of discovering and developing new projects.

On Friday it picked up more ground near its high grade First Hit gold project in WA, where drilling in the 2000’s intercepted high grades like 9m at 64.7g/t just below a historic resource.

 

ANTILLES GOLD (ASX:AAU) +53%

In May last year, Antilles – formerly PanTerra — finalised a joint venture to develop the La Demajagua gold-silver deposit in Cuba.

PanTerra wants to produce ~60,000 tonnes a year of concentrate grading around 47 grams per tonne (g/t) gold and 380g/t silver for at least six years.

A 25,000m drilling program kicks off this month to establish JORC resources. Feasibility studies for the stage one open pit mine should be completed by Q3 2022, Antilles says.

 

PURSUIT MINERALS (ASX:PUR) +52%

Pursuit began listed life as a gold explorer Riviera Resources in 2008, then became iron ore miner SAFM in 2010.

Low iron ore prices killed that dream. A reskinned Pursuit emerged in 2017 with a base metals focus, which evolved into vanadium (2018), nickel (2020) back to gold (2020) and then nickel copper PGE’s (late 2020).

Whew.

Any share price moves at the moment can probs be attributed to the company’s Warrior nickel copper PGE project which is a proverbial stone’s throw from Chalice’s (ASX:CHN) world class Julimar discovery near Perth in WA.

 

RED MOUNTAIN MINING (ASX:RMX) +50%

Why did Red Mountain’s share price spike on no news this week?

There are four possible reasons, the company says.

One: drill results from a maiden drill program at its high grade Mt Maitland gold project are expected on or after Tuesday, 12 January.

 Two: access agreements for its Koonenberry gold project in NSW — adjacent to Manhattan Corporation’s (ASX: MHC) recent discovery — are expected around the middle of January.

Three: “The recent bullish increase in the gold price.”

And four: “The strong sentiment towards rare earths” as Red Mountain prepares to punch more holes into its Mt Mansbridge rare earths project in WA.

 

S2 RESOURCES (ASX:S2R) +46%

S2 Resources (ASX:S2R)  – also known as ‘the crew that unearthed the world-class Nova deposit’ — took a share price hit after drilling a December duster in the Fraser Range of WA.

The explorer has now pared much of those losses after announcing significant gold hits at its recent gold discovery in Finland.

Highlights include 8m at 4.8g/t gold, 575m from a previous high grade intercept of 6.85m at 11.8g/t gold.

If they connect up this could be a decent sized gold system.