• Gold falls as nervous nailbiting over US Fed rate decision begins
  • Energy up big, materials slightly improved as bank support inspires market confidence
  • Aeris Resources gets investors onside with new copper and zinc discovery at Jaguar mine in WA

Gold miners have shed the exuberant skin they formed as failing banks sent investors rushing for safe havens early this week.

That has been replaced by a nervous atmosphere, with nailbiting all round as gold producers wait to see where the US Fed heads with interest rates tonight.

Prices fell over 2% overnight, with the London Bullion Marketing Association reporting PM prices fell from near 12-month highs to US$1952.50/oz overnight.

According to ANZ’s Jack Chambers, around 80% of the market expects a 25bps rise. Despite the lift, the lower severity on previous 50 and 75bps increases would be viewed positively in the precious metals space.

“The risk-on tone across markets weighed on gold. Investor demand waned as US equities rallied and yield on US Treasuries rose,” he said.

“All eyes now shift to the Fed’s two-day meeting that culminates on Wednesday (Thursday morning Sydney time).

“The market now sees a roughly 80% chance of a 25bp hike. This would ultimately support the precious metals sector.”

On the other hand copper is looking a little brighter, with the red metal lifting marginally to around US$8700/t, a fourth straight gain.

“Copper rose for the fourth session as concerns of a full-blown banking crisis eased,” Chambers said.

“Swift action by regulators have (soothed) concerns that the banking crisis would impact economic growth.

“The recent selloff has also cleaned out excessive length in investor positioning, with some evidence of short covering amid the improved risk appetite.

“Signs of stronger demand in China also boosted sentiment. Inventories at Shanghai Exchange warehouses fell 15% last week. Stockpiles immediately available for delivery at LME warehouses also fell this week.”

The ASX materials sector gained 0.45%, with lithium stocks Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) and Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) lifting.

That was nothing on the 4.09% gain for energy stocks, powered by big runs for Woodside (ASX:WDS), Santos (ASX:STO) and Whitehaven Coal (ASX:WHC). Oil prices rallied as US regulators moved to insure bank deposits against potential closures.


Ground Breakers share prices today:


Aeris up as new discovery emerges at Bentley

The Labuschagne family is used to hitting tonnes.

And mining exec Andre is no different to Baggy Green donning son Marnus, with five drill holes striking what looks to be a new massive sulphide lens at Aeris Resources’ (ASX:AIS) Jaguar mine in WA.

Acquired only last year in a $234 million deal to mop up the base metals assets of Washington H. Soul Pattinson, now Aeris’ top shareholder, the mine has regularly delivered new orebodies across several years of operations.

The Bacalar lens is the third discovered at the Bentley deposit in the past two years, with high grade copper and zinc results boosting the mine life potential of the orebody.

Results from an initial five holes include:

  • 7.6m at 1.97% Cu, 5.9% Zn, 54g/t Ag and 0.82g/t Au
  • 11.3m at 1.95% Cu, 12.11% Zn, 63g/t Ag and 0.85g/t Au
  • 12.6m at 2.91% Cu, 4% Zn, 67g/t Ag and 1.3g/t Au
  • 15.8m at 3.7% Cu, 6.06% Zn, 101g/t Ag and 1.61g/t Au; and,
  • 15.2m at 1.7% Cu, 8.2% Zn, 58g/t Ag and 0.69g/t Au.
  • Not bad indeed.

    Traced 60m along strike, 100m down plunge and up to 15m true thickness, Bacalar is next to existing life of mine infrastructure, opening a potential development pathway.

    A drill platform will be extended underground to enable targeting down to 400m below the current Bentley mineral resource.

    “When we acquired the Jaguar Operations last year, as part of the Round Oak Minerals acquisition, we had a firm view that the Bentley Mine and the broader Jaguar tenement package was highly prospective for further discoveries of base metals and also potentially gold,” AIS exec chairman Labuschagne (Andre, not Marnus) said.

    “The discovery of Bacalar supports our view on the prospectivity at Jaguar and follows on from the other recent discoveries of the Turbo and Java Deeps lenses.”


    Aeris Resources (ASX:AIS) and Washington H. Soul Pattinson (ASX:SOL) share prices today: