Merger would create leading gold producer as sector struggles to attract investors
Canada’s Barrick Gold is in talks to merge with Randgold Resources, its London-listed rival, in a $18bn deal that would create the world’s leading gold producer, according to reports.
The discussions between Barrick and Randgold follow a dismal year for the sector, which has struggled to attract the interest of investors.
Shares in Barrick have dropped 25 per cent amid criticism of its strategy, while Randgold has fallen 34 per cent as it has struggled with a number of operational issues, including a strike at one of its biggest mines.
That is a worst performance than the gold price, which is down by more than 9 per cent year-to-date to $1,199 a troy ounce, hit by a stronger US dollar.
IKN, a blog specialising in the mining industry, first reported news of the talks between Randgold and Barrick, saying an announcement could come on Sunday or before trading starts on Monday. Bloomberg later said the two companies were in advanced discussions.
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