Shares in North America's large gold mining companies fell to near 52-week lows yesterday as the precious metal's price remained stagnant. Recent gold prices have hovered around $274 an ounce, and over the last year, trading prices have ranged from $252.80 to $326.25, Reuters reports.
Barrick Gold Corp., North America's second largest gold producer, closed Tuesday at $24.20 Canadian. Over the last 52 weeks, Barrick has traded between C$22.50 and C$38.20. Homestake Mining Co., based in the U.S., closed Tuesday at $5-7/16. Homestake has traded between $5-1/4 and $10-7/8 over the last year. Canada's Placer Dome Inc. fell to C$12.80, nearing the lower end of its 52-week range of C$11.20 to C$25.95.
"It's very obvious that the gold price is subdued. The volatility in the gold price is very low," Chad Williams, a mining analyst in Toronto, told Reuters. "The activity in all the gold exchanges is extremely low. The interest level is probably at its all-time low in terms of the market, relative to other things that are going on."
According to Reuters, traders say the lack of interest in gold-mining stocks came as investor sentiment shifted away from the once influential and safe gold sector to the allure of technology stocks. Most analysts agree a change in investor sentiment and a shift in market conditions are needed for stock prices to rebound.
- by Julia M. Duncan