The impact from the coronavirus outbreak has continued to hit economies around the world, with US consumer spending experiencing its biggest drop since 1959.
According to the US Department of Commerce, consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of the country’s economic activity, sank 13.6 percent last month versus 6.9 percent in March.
More than 5.82 million people have now been infected, with the death toll passing 358,000 as of last Thursday (May 28). Of the more than 2.88 million closed cases, over 2.58 million have recovered.
To keep investors up to date with what’s been going on in the mining industry related to COVID-19, we’ve put together a round-up of the Investing News Network’s (INN) top stories last week on the pandemic. All information and data were current as of last Thursday.
INN’s COVID-19 coverage: Top stories this week
At this year’s Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada convention, Adrian Day suggested gold could hit US$1,750 per ounce by year end. With that milestone reached, what’s next?
“I’m certainly not going to hope that gold doesn’t go any higher just so I can be correct,” he said during a video interview. “It’s definitely going to go higher in my view.”
How much higher depends on the evolution of many different factors. “Looking at where we are now … I would say (gold will go) meaningfully higher. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if we had new highs — new all-time highs — this year,” added Day, who is president of Adrian Day Asset Management.
Global merger and acquisition activity is down as much as 30 percent year-over-year, but there have been some sizeable deals in the gold sector in May.
Midway through the month, three deals were in the works, including a since-abandoned three way merger that would have seen Gran Colombia Gold (TSX:GCM,OTCQX:TPRFF) acquire both Gold X Mining (TSXV:GLDX,OTCQX:SSPXF) and Guyana Goldfields (TSX:GUY,OTC Pink:GUYFF), plus a merger between SSR Mining (TSX:SSRM,NASDAQ:SSRM) and Alacer Gold (TSX:ASR,ASX:ASR). Meanwhile, Adriatic Metals (ASX:ADT,LSE:ADT1) was planning to purchase Tethyan Resource (TSXV:TETH).
The SSR Mining deal has been described as a merger of equals, while Adriatic said the Tethyan acquisition would bolster its portfolio with Serbian assets.
The coronavirus outbreak has put pressure on supply and demand for copper in 2020, intensifying market oversupply, according to the International Wrought Copper Council (IWCC).
In 2020, the IWCC is expecting copper to be in a surplus of 285,000 tonnes as a result of the pandemic, with that amount increasing to 675,000 tonnes next year.
“These are unprecedented times and the copper industry is not immune from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” states a report from the group. “The economic disruption and its impact on the copper industry has resulted in greater uncertainty in the factors affecting the supply and demand for copper.”
INN’s COVID-19 coverage: The bright side
Last Friday (May 29), 37 countries, led by Costa Rica and the World Health Organization, launched an initiative aimed at sharing vaccines, medicines and diagnostic tools to tackle the global pandemic.
More than 100 labs around the world are looking to come up with a vaccine against COVID-19, including 10 that have made it to the clinical trial stage.
In commodities, gold was trading above US$1,700, with silver holding well above US$17 per ounce last week. In base metals, copper was on track for a weekly gain, trading around US$5,300 per tonne by the end of the week.
More COVID-19 coverage from INN
Click the links below for more of INN’s commodity-specific coverage of COVID-19:
- Gold and COVID-19: Who’s Reacting and How?
- Silver and COVID-19: Who’s Reacting and How?
- Platinum, Palladium and COVID-19: Who’s Reacting and How?
- South African Economy Uncertain as COVID-19 Closes Mines
- Copper and COVID-19: Who’s Reacting and How?
- COVID-19: Copper Mines Impacted by Coronavirus Measures
- Zinc and COVID-19: Who’s Reacting and How?
- Lithium and COVID-19: Who’s Reacting and How?
- Cobalt and COVID-19: Who’s Reacting and How?
- Diamonds and COVID-19: Who’s Reacting and How?
- Potash and COVID-19: Who’s Reacting and How?
Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Resource for real-time updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Priscila Barrera, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.