Victoria Gold eyes 2024 targets as bullion trades near record high

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Victoria Gold Corp. [VGCX-TSX] has released its operational highlights for the first quarter of 2024 and said it expects to meet its production targets for the year.

However, in early morning trading Wednesday, the shares eased 8.4% or 64 cents to $7.00 on volume of 236,320. The shares trade in a 52-week range of $11.16 and $5.09.

“For the second consecutive year, we have stacked ore on the heap leach pad through the winter,’ said Victoria Gold President and CEO John McConnell. “While quarterly gold production is down year over year, the summer and fall seasons are our strongest operating periods and we expect to achieve 2024 gold production guidance of 165,000 to 185,000 ounces and cost guidance of US$1,450 to US$1,650 per ounce of gold sold,’’ he said.

The Eagle gold mine is situated on the Dublin Gulch gold property in the central Yukon Territory, about 375 kilometres north of Whitehorse and approximately 85 kilometres from the town of Mayo.

Covering 555 square kilometer, Dublin Gulch hosts the Eagle and Olive gold deposits, which contain proven and probable reserves of 2.3 million ounces of gold, with a grade of 0.63 g/t.

As of December 31, 2023, and adjusting for mining depletion through this date, the mineral resource for the Eagle and Olive gold deposits is estimated to host 234 million tonnes of average grade 0.59 g/t gold, containing 4.4 million ounces of gold in the measured and indicated category, inclusive of proven and probable reserves, and a further 36 million tonnes of average grade 0.63 g/t, containing 700,000 ounces in the inferred category.

After a first gold pour in September, 2019, the Eagle mine is expected to produce about 180,000 of gold annually from an open pit heap leach operation that ranks as the Yukon’s largest private sector employer, with about 500 on the payroll.

The Eagle mine is an asset that is highly levered to the price of gold, which is currently trading near a record high after closing at US$2,352.78 an ounce as investors wait for US inflation data that could help shape the U.S. Federal Reserves’ outlook on interest rates.

Gold has rallied more than 18% since mid-February, with the gains perplexing some onlookers because markets have trimmed bets based on rate cuts due to strong US economic data.

“Still heightened geopolitical risks in the Middle East and Ukraine, plus buying by central banks have added some bullish momentum for gold,’’ Scotiabank said in an investment news letter, Wednesday.

Victoria Gold produced 29,580 ounces of gold during the first quarter of 2024. Gold production in the first quarter of 2024 was lower year-over-year due to lower grades related to mine sequencing of the Eagle orebody, the timing of placing stacked tonnes under the leach, and lower than planned stacking rates in the fourth quarter of 2023, the company said in a press release.

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