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Barrick Gold's Mark Bristow on how to out-flank bitcoin

Kitco News

The cryptocurrency boom has made the precious metal industry realize it has to work harder, said Barrick Gold CEO Mark Bristow, who talked to Kitco on Wednesday.

The senior gold miner (ABX:TSX) released its Q1 today, which reported a 78% jump in first-quarter profit smashing analyst expectations.

Bitcoin has stolen some of gold's thunder. While bitcoin has run from under $8,000 to over $50,000 in just a year, gold is mired in the $1,700-$1,850 trading range after last's year run-up.

Like it's done in the past, Bristow said gold has to innovate.

"Gold is still too hard to own [and] to trade. The ETFs were a big boon to our industry. A lot of miners felt that it would negatively impact the equities. It was completely the opposite. It grew the industry. It made it more transparent. It allowed people to trade," said Bristow. 

"The cryptocurrencies and the other competing options have forced us to realize we need to work harder to create a fungible [option that] allows every person in the world to...use it to pay for things."

Regarding the company's 50-50 Donlin project with NOVAGOLD, Bristow said Barrick has started putting the gold into "proper geological units" and company can start plotting its next steps.

In March Barrick shared the last set of assay results from a 2020 85-hole, 23,361-meter drill program. According to the statement, assay results demonstrate higher drilled grade-thickness than predicted by previous modelling. Data collected has resulted in an improved appreciation of the controls on mineralization.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and may not reflect those of Kitco Metals Inc. The author has made every effort to ensure accuracy of information provided; however, neither Kitco Metals Inc. nor the author can guarantee such accuracy. This article is strictly for informational purposes only. It is not a solicitation to make any exchange in commodities, securities or other financial instruments. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.