The summer doldrums have hit the resource-rich Canadian markets, and a notable lack of buying interest has caused the broader markets to decline on weak volumes. And the critical game six of the Stanley Cup finals to be held in Vancouver on Friday also seemed to have many investors focussed on hockey rather than money. Once all the trading was done this past week, the TSX Ventures Exchange, home to more junior exploration companies than anywhere else in the world, had dropped 5.87 per cent, while the TSX Gold Index had fallen 4.84 per cent.

Let’s start off with the political news out of Peru and how that impacted the Canadian-listed companies working there.

Righto. The presidential election victory went to leftist candidate Ollanta Humala and that sparked renewed concerns that mining taxes will be raised and that the government may take control of the country’s natural resources.

As we said in our article earlier in the week.

Precisely. Since then companies operating in Peru, along with Humala himself have attempted to reassure investors that the concerns are overdone. But there were still plenty of fallers come the end of the week. Candente Copper lost C$0.17 to close at C$1.39, Sulliden Gold dropped C$0.27 to C$1.90 and Bear Creek Mining fell C$1.15 to C$5.05.

What’s been going on elsewhere?

Drilling news produced mixed results, depending on the whims of the market. Kaminak Gold tabled the first set of results from its highly anticipated drill program on the Coffee project in the Yukon’s White Gold district. Despite cutting 27 metre of 2.5 grams gold per tonne and 10.4 grams gold per tonne over six metres, investors were unimpressed because Kaminak ended the week down C$0.22 at C$3.31.

But B2Gold prompted some buying after the company announced results from its newly discovered Cebollati gold property in Uruguay. Highlights included 2.2 metres of 23.61 grams gold per tonne. B2Gold closed at C$3.68 for a C$0.42 gain.

However, despite cutting 112.9 metres of 2.51 grams gold per tonne at its Ana Paula project in Mexico, shares of Newstrike Capital lost C$0.20 to close at C$1.85.

And Avion Gold continues to hit the goodies at the Vindaloo zone at its Hounde project in Burkina Faso. The latest results included 32 metres running 11.48 grams gold per tonne. Avion ended the week up C$0.11 at C$1.64.

Duluth Metals tagged 34.5 feet averaging 2.82% copper equivalent from its Nokomisdeposit in Minnesota. Duluth ended the week up C$0.04 at C$2.21.

Trade Winds Ventures tabled a drill intercept of 4.37 grams gold per tonne over 15 metres at its 50 per cent owned Block A joint venture project in northeastern Ontario. Not good enough in a down market, though, because Trade Winds closed at C$0.22 for a C$0.025 loss.

Anybody putting out financials?

Minera Andes managed to table earnings of $17 million, or $0.06 per share, for the three months ended March 31st, 2011. The company’s 49 per cent owned San Jose mine in Chile produced 18,000 ounces of gold and just over 1.34 million ounces of silver. For the week, Minera Andes lost C$0.11 at C$2.29.

On the diamond front, higher prices for rough diamonds propelled Harry Winston Diamond to first quarter earnings of US$3.6 million, up from US$2.9 million in the same three month period a year earlier. Harry Winston ended the week down C$0.04 at C$16.

There was also a bit of a legal spat as Barrick Gold took on Goldcorp, New Gold and Xstrata over Goldcorp's purchase of Xstrata's 70 per cent interest in the El Morro project and its subsequent sale to New Gold. Barrick claims that the deal with Goldcorp breached El Morro shareholders' agreement and is now going to trial in Ontario’s Superior Court. Barrick is looking either to regain the 70 per cent stake in the project or to get financial compensation for economic damages. Barrick ended the week down C$2.25 at C$42.62, Goldcorp fell C$1.78 to close at C$46.20 and New Gold dropped C$0.52 to close at C$8.99.

The job market in Canada has shown some improvement but all eyes are on the end of quantitative easing by the United States Federal Reserve as of June 30th. The stopping of the printing presses is widely expected to impact commodity prices and not in a good way. We will see what next week has in store.


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