News Wrap

IN THIS morning’s News Wrap: Investors place big bets on silver; BHP files paperwork for potential development of South Flank deposit; and SA dangles $50m carrot for Whyalla steelworks buyer.

Lou Caruana

Investors place big bets on silver

For all the talk about a collapse in commodities, investors are close to making the biggest bet ever on silver, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Silver funds have taken in a wave of new cash this year and assets are approaching an all-time high. Prices are up 23% in 2016, following a similar rally in gold on speculation the Federal Reserve will hold off on raising interest rates.

“We're still seeing big chunks of managed money coming into the silver market,” Adrian Ash, head of research at online-trading service BullionVault, said by phone from London. “Inflows from our clients match those at the all-time highs of early 2011.”

BHP files paperwork for potential development of South Flank deposit

BHP Billiton is studying an option to develop a massive new iron ore deposit in Australia to replace lost tonnes as operations age and reserves decline, according to the company and documents filed with environmental regulators, according to the Australian Financial Review.

The deposit is called South Flank and lies 10 km south of BHP's existing Mining Area C operation and would create an expanse 26 km long and 2 km wide.

SA dangles $50m carrot for Whyalla steelworks buyer

Any new owner of the loss-making Whyalla steelworks will be handed $50 million to upgrade the plant by the South Australian government, which wants Malcolm Turnbull and Bill Shorten to commit $100 million in federal funding, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

But the Prime Minister on Thursday night gave a lukewarm response, signalling he wants to let the sale process for Arrium, which is already underway, to run its course.

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