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US Federal Reserve officials stressed that risks to the US economy remained elevated as they agreed to put interest rates on hold following their third cut this year (reports The Australian Financial Review).

US Federal Reserve officials stressed that risks to the US economy remained elevated as they agreed to put interest rates on hold following their third cut this year (reports The Australian Financial Review). Many participants saw downside risks to the economic outlook as elevated, "further underscoring the case for a rate cut at this meeting,'' according to minutes of the October 29-30 Federal Open Market Committee session released Wednesday (Thursday AEDT) in Washington.

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Advanced explorers and emerging producers such as Aeon Metals and Todd River well positioned to benefit from the upturn

The year all but complete will go down as a golden one for the junior resources sector. Annoyingly though, gold is now going through a correction that has knocked close to $200/oz off the local price and, more importantly, short-term sentiment around the US dollar price. While gold goes through its correction to recover on the other side – ABN Amro is tipping $US1600/oz by the fourth quarter of next year – there has been a notable improvement around sentiment towards the base metals, led by Dr Copper.

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Historical evidence suggests gold mining equities are about to take off, fund manager Ronald-Peter Stoferle told delegates at the Zurich Precious Metals Summit (reports MiningNews). Stoferle, a fund manager at Liechtenstein-based Incrementum AG and author of an annual report entitled ‘In gold we trust', said the pattern of mining equity performance in every bull market since 1942 suggested a steep rise - or "euphoria" as he put it - typically seen at the end of an uptrend, was still to come.

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Supply cuts and renewed optimism of a deal to end the China v US trade war triggered a modest realignment this week by investors

Supply cuts and renewed optimism of a deal to end the China v US trade war triggered a modest realignment this week by investors who shifted funds into industrial commodities and away from gold and other safe havens. How long that trend can continue will be very much influenced by political factors unfolding around the world, from Brexit in the UK to impeachment speculation in the US and civil unrest in Chile and other important South American copper-producing countries.

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Plus, the nickel planets look to be lining up for Mincor and its latest find

Junior explorers/developers vacated the WA iron ore space in a hurry back in 2011-12 when the iron ore price began its almighty slide from $US168/t down to $US55/t in 2015. But a couple of dam tragedies in Brazil and an annual global steelmake that has continued to surprise to the upside resulted in the iron ore price steadily rebuilding to an impressive $US102/t in the September quarter. Add in the lower exchange rate and iron ore is again a licence to print money for the big three of the WA industry – Rio Tinto, BHP and Fortescue.

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Plus, Canterbury holds its breath ahead of Queensland copper assays and Strandline’s big WA mineral sands project on track to secure funding from the Government’s Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility.

Demand for stock in Stavely Minerals’ (SVY) $19.6 million placement at a $1 a share in the wake of its high-grade copper hits at the Thursday’s Gossan project in Western Victoria was a staggering $100 million. Hits like 32m at 5.9% copper and individual assays of up to 40% copper have obviously fired up interest in the discovery, with Stavely only stopping at $19.6m because that was the threshold for proceeding without the need for shareholder approval.

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First signs of lithium hitting the bottom after a torrid year of falling prices could be seen in market commentary this week with leading investment banks hinting that a lithium rebound could be on the way.

First signs of lithium hitting the bottom after a torrid year of falling prices could be seen in market commentary this week with leading investment banks hinting that a lithium rebound could be on the way. J.P. Morgan was first to suggest that it might be time to take a fresh look at lithium stocks, followed by Morgan Stanley, which said a tour of Chile’s lithium industry revealed some ongoing uncertainty but that “downside risk is becoming more limited”.

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Plus, success for Stavely and Alkane spark renewed interest in Eastern States exploration, talk suggests European Cobalt may be heading for Aussie gold and Meteoric poised to deliver eagerly-awaited assays on its Brazilian gold play.

A diamond being the ultimate item of discretsionary expenditure, there should be no surprise that diamond prices have been down in the dumps. Fears of global economic recession overlain with the threat of trade wars is not exactly conducive to buoyant demand and pricing for the sparklers. It is why the few listed diamond producers that exist around the world have being doing it tough on the share price front.

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