Natural Resources >> Sector Roundtables >> December 20, 2004


VICTOR FLORES is a Senior Analyst with HSBC Securities (USA) Inc., focusing on precious metals. Previously, he was associated with Marleau, Lemire Securities, Inc., and U.S. Global Investors. He earned both his Bachelor's degree in Geological Sciences and his MA in Energy and Mineral Resources Management from the University of Texas at Austin. A Chartered Financial Analyst, Mr. Flores is a member of the AIMR and the Society of Mining Engineers. Profile
MIKE CURRAN joined the Mining Equity Research Team with CIBC World Markets as a Director in April 2003. He has worked in Equity Research since mid-1994, working with CIBC World Markets, Merrill Lynch Canada, and predecessor firm Midland Walwyn Capital. Mr. Curran's past experience includes several years as an Exploration Geologist, exploring primarily for precious metals (gold and PGMs) in Canada (primarily Ontario and British Columbia) in the mid-1980s-early 1990s. His educational background includes completion of the CFA program (AIMR), an MBA (finance) from Queen's University (Kingston, Ontario), an MSc in Mineral Exploration from the Royal School of Mines (UK), and a combined Honors BSc in Geology and Chemistry from Carleton University (Ottawa, Ontario). Profile
JOHN H. HILL has covered the mining and metals industry for Citigroup Global Markets, Inc. since 1998. Previously, he worked for over 10 years in the metals industry in operations and finance for Inco Ltd. and Echo Bay, starting as a mine geologist. Mr. Hill has extensive international experience, having worked on mining projects in over 15 countries. He received an MSc degree in engineering economics from the Colorado School of Mines and a BA degree in geology from Middlebury College. He holds the CFA designation and has testified to the US Congress on mineral policy issues. Profile
TWST: Mike, let's start with you. We've got gold at recent peak levels

of about $450. Is this a good time or a bad time to talk about gold?

Mr. Curran: I think it's a great time to talk about