Two of Canada's stronger mid-tier gold producers were out of the gate today with positive 2015 production reports.
Timmins miner Lake Shore Gold (LSG-T) produced 178,700 ounces of gold in 2015, compared to a record 185,600 in 2014. However, the treasury has grown to $100 million (in cash and bullion) compared to $60 million a year ago, and Lake Shore also paid off its debt in 2015.
Lake Shore achieved record mill thoroughput in 2015, processing about 1.3 million tonnes at an average grade of 4.4 g/t with average recoveries above 96%.
2015 also saw Lake Shore take over Temex Resources before that junior and its historic workings in East Timmins could be absorbed into the new Oban Mining (OBM-T) vehicle.
Lake Shore plans to release a resource estimate for the 144 Gap Zone during the first quarter.
The company has a market cap of about $593 million and the stock is up about 51% in the past year.
St. Andrew Goldfields (SAS-T), which in November agreed to a takeover by Kirkland Lake Gold, produced 107,733 ounces of gold in 2015 - a record for the company, which operates three mines in the Timmins gold district.
Fourth-quarter production - boosted by the Taylor mine, which began producing in November - was 37,155 ounces.
Head grades ranged from 4.55 g/t Au at the Holt mine to 7.55 g/t at Taylor. 2016 should also be a banner year as it will include a full year's worth of production at the Taylor mine. St. Andrew is also exploring along 120km of land straddling the Porcupine-Destor Fault Zone.
The deal with Kirkland Lake Gold is expected to be completed by Jan. 26, and the new company is projected to produce between 260,000 and 310,000 oz of gold at cash costs between US$600 and $690.
2015 was a banner year for St. Andrew shares, too - they're up 74% in the past 12 months. St. Andrew's market cap is $173 million.
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