ORENINC INDEX – Monday, March 30th 2020
North America’s leading junior mining finance data provider
Last Week: 18.10
This week: 30.33
The Oreninc Index increased in the week ending March 27th, 2020 to 30.33 from 18.10 as another large bought deal was announced.
With deaths attributed to the COVID-19 virus outbreak more than doubling in the past week to almost 35,000 and almost 750,000 cases reported, including 150,000 in the USA, the world is increasingly in lockdown mode to contain the outbreak. High profile people who have contracted the virus now include UK prime minister Boris Johnson and heir to the throne Prince Charles. The Tokyo Olympic Games have also been postponed until 2021.
The number of US coronavirus cases is almost double the number in China, which appears to have slowed the rate of new infections down sufficiently such that it is relaxed travel restrictions and restarting economic activity.
However, the big news this week was a US$2 trillion stimulus package agreed in the US aimed at helping businesses and the newly unemployed. The measures include loans to corporations, tax breaks and direct payments to companies and individuals.
Equity markets have experienced extreme volatility this past week. US markets jumped earlier in the week in response to news of the stimulus package, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average advancing 1,770 points (9.5%) before falling away as the week progressed.
Details on how the stimulus will be distributed are as yet unclear, although clearly needed as the US Dept of Labor data showed first-time US jobless claims skyrocketed to a seasonally adjusted record of 3.3 million, due to layoffs as companies struggle to cope with the sudden and dramatic slowdown in activity due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The previous high was 695,000 claims in October 1982. The figures next month are expected to be even worse by some analysts.
Purchasing managers indexes around the world fell with many hitting record lows.
In Europe, the European Central Bank said its €750 billion euro Pandemic Emergency Purchase Program (PEPP) includes scrapping issuer limits on purchases of bonds and widened the scope of buying to include instruments with as little as 70 days left to maturity.
Gold saw increasing support as the combination of low interest rates and the financial stimulus package brought expectations of inflation and a weakening of the US dollar.
Oil prices continue to fall with a barrel of West Texas Intermediate trading below $22 a barrel. US oil production is rapidly falling with wells being idled at the fastest rate in 35 years.
On to the money: total fund raises jumped to $91.6 million, a two-week high, which included no brokered financings and one bought deal financing for $75 million, a two-week high. The average offer size jumped to $5 million, a two-week high, while the number of financings remained unchanged at 18.
The spot gold price saw a strong rebound with the yellow metal closing up at US$1,628/oz from $1,498/oz a week ago. The yellow metal is up 7.31% so far this year. The US dollar index pulled back to close down at 98.32 from 102.81 last week. The VanEck managed GDXJ recovered to over $33 before pulling back as the week ended to close up at $29.91 from $24.66 a week ago. The index is down 29.22% so far in 2020. The US Global Go Gold ETF also regained lost ground as it closed up at $12.73 from $10.85 a week ago. It is down 27.51% so far in 2020. The HUI Arca Gold BUGS Index closed up as well at 194.21 from 166.29 last week. The SPDR GLD ETF inventory saw a sharp 6% rebound as it closed up at 964.66 tonnes from 908.18 tonnes a week ago.
In other commodities, spot silver recovered as it closed up at $14.47/oz from $12.61/oz a week ago. Copper was flat on the week as it closed down a cent at $2.16/lb from $2.17/lb a week ago. The oil price continued its descent as WTI closed down at $21.84 a barrel from $22.63 a barrel a week ago.
The Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index (VIX or fear index) fell a smidge, closing down at 65.54 from 66.04 a week ago.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average had a strong bounce as it closed up at 21,636 from 19,173 a week ago. Canada’s S&P/TSX Composite Index also rebounded to close up at 12,687 from 11,851 the previous week. The S&P/TSX Venture Composite Index closed up at 388.58 from 356.54 last week.
Orla Mining (TSX-V:OLA) opened a $75.03 million offering on a bought deal basis.
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