News Wrap

IN THIS morning’s News Wrap: Siberian miner Tigers caught in a cold war; gold heading for its first loss since 2000; and Perth financiers switch from mining to biotech.

Lou Caruana

Siberian miner Tigers caught in a cold war

Tigers Realm Coal director Dr Bruce Gray and the company’s board have some stark differences when it comes to “financing strategy” for its proposed Siberian coal project, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Gray sensationally sought intervention from the Takeovers Panel last week in a bid to block Tigers management from formalising a $62 million financing package that would bankroll the company through the completion of a bankable feasibility study for its Siberian project.

The raising had been announced on December 12 and, despite offering some modest placement and purchase opportunities to existing shareholders, it was dominated by placements to two Russian funds with varying links to the Russian government.

Gold heading for its first loss since 2000

Barring a late price surge, gold's value will suffer its first annual drop since the start of the millennium, while the precious metal risks further losses next year, according to The Australian.

Gold stood at $US1205 ($A1350) an ounce on Friday on the London Bullion Market, down almost 27% this year on weaker demand and easing inflation – snapping 12 years of uninterrupted annual price growth.

Perth financiers switch from mining to biotech

Along St Georges Terrace, the epicentre of Perth's mighty resources industry, it sounds very much like sacrilege, according to The Australian.

But a growing number of brokers, bankers and investors have come to the seemingly heretical view that the once-maligned biotechnology sector is trumping the mining and exploration plays that have traditionally sucked up most of the city's speculative capital.