It seems like an eternity since the S&P/TSX Venture Index pierced the 2,450 mark in March 2011; since then it has collapsed almost 2,000 points, or over 75%, as junior mining equities tumbled in response to falling commodity prices, headlined by gold’s fall from $1,900 per ounce in July 2011 to below $1,080 per ounce in July this year. This week the S&P/TSX Venture hit a new 52-week low, falling below the 600 mark in July and finishing at 576 on Friday. Meanwhile, gold was steady for the week, finishing at $1,092 per ounce. Many investors have taken a backseat over summer; instead awaiting the autumn period, which has historically been seen as a bellwether for increased investor interest in the mining space. However, much will depend on the U.S. Federal Reserve and whether it decides to lift interest rates which, if it does, will likely see further downward pressure on the price of gold as investors load up on the U.S. bond market. Silver was also flat for the week, finishing at $14.75 per ounce, while platinum and palladium continued to fall, finishing at $961 and $601 per ounce respectively. The major base metals continued to slide, with copper (↓1.1%), nickel (↓2.2%), and zinc (↓3.3%) each finishing at $2.32, $4.88, and 0.84 per pound respectively; lead was the exception, rising 1.5% to finish at $0.78 per pound. The price of WTI crude (↓3.3%) continued its recent plunge, falling below the $43, finishing at $43.84 per barrel as over-supply concerns, exacerbated by the recent U.S./Iran deal that could potentially see more crude flood the market, continue to take hold. Finally, The UxC Broker Average Price (BAP) for uranium recovered this week after falling below the $36 per pound mark last Friday; finishing at $36.13 at the time of publication.

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