Barrick Gold To Lay Off 1,500 Pascua-Lama Workers; US Silver Drops 4.0%

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Things aren’t looking good at Barrick Gold Corp’s Pascua-Lama gold mine. The company “is laying off roughly 1,500 of its approximately 5,000 workers on the Argentine side of its suspended Pascua-Lama gold mine project, a local government spokesman said on Saturday,” reports Reuters.

“The Toronto-based miner said in October it was moth-balling the huge project, which straddles the border between Argentina and Chile.”

“However, Barrick maintained workers in Argentina’s Western San Juan province to perform maintenance tasks and build some infrastructure.”

“Pascua-Lama has also been plagued by cost overruns, what experts have called poor management, and lower bullion prices.”

In metal price news for precious metals…

With a decline of 4.0 percent on Friday, December 13, US silver recorded the biggest price drift of the day. The price of Indian silver changed direction with a 3.2 percent drop. After two days of improving prices, the metal finished. Chinese silver fell 2.4 percent last Friday. The price of Japanese silver closed. Following a couple days of improvement, the metal’s price weakened by 0.5 percent.

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US gold bullion ended the day, after the 2.2 percent drop last Friday. The price of Chinese gold bullion declined 2.0 percent. Indian gold bullion finished the day down 0.8 percent. Following a couple days of improvement, the price of Japanese gold bullion weakened by 0.3 percent.

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US platinum bar fell 1.7 percent last Friday. The price of Chinese platinum bar fell 1.4 percent. Japanese platinum bar saw little change in its price last Friday.

US palladium bar prices saw a 2.6 percent decline. After holding steady for the past few days, the price of Chinese palladium bar fell 2.5 percent. The price of Japanese palladium bar held steady.