Gold vs Silver During COVID-19

Gold vs Silver During COVID-19

If you’ve ever followed Gold and/or Silver trends you’ve probably heard the phrase “gold is to keep, silver is to trade”. But why is that? Common sense would tell us that you keep when something is growing steadily and you trade when it is volatile, but is that really the case during a pandemic that has affected the entire world? Let’s take a look at basic facts about gold and silver as well as how they have behaved in response to COVID-19. 

The total supply of silver each year is 1 billion ounces while new gold’s annual supply is 120 million. This makes for a bigger market for silver, but anyone with a basic understanding of supply and demand would understand why the price of silver would be that much lower than that of gold’s.  Furthermore, having more supply to trade with each year makes this metal the  perfect candidate for investors to play around, by basically buying low and selling high. This creates the volatility we see today.  Something else to take into account when buying precious metals is storage.  Since silver is cheaper than gold, for the same price you would get a higher volume of silver than you would gold, therefore costing you more in storage space.   You may consider storing your own metals but there are guidelines and risks to this strategy, therefore storing companies seem like a better idea.  Having said that, Silver has a much wider industrial use than gold does, therefore it is much easier to get rid of silver than it is to get rid of gold. 

 Now, as to how they’re behaving in 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Silver has fallen quite a bit due to 2 reasons: 

  1. For a volatile metal like silver, people preferred to sell early while they still could, they do not see silver as a metal that can hold its own during the pandemic and so prices went down. 
  2. According to a report by GlobalData, silver mines have been hit the worst by temporary shutdowns, much more than gold has. This hurts an already falling silver. 

Right now silver is quite undervalued, but this doesn’t mean go buy it right now, we still have not seen the second wave of COVID-19 that experts and epidemiologists are anticipating.  It is still unclear how the pandemic will progress in the near future. 

Best thing to do right now is to wait and see what will happen with the pandemic and make a decision once it is safe to do so.

– Javier Ortiz


Construct a 3D drift from a Center Line | Tip Of The Month

Construct a 3D drift from a Center Line | Tip Of The Month

In this tip of the month, we will see how construct a 3D drift from a center line. This will allow you to plan drift development and calculate the total volume and tonnage of the extracted ore. To do so: 


  1. Go to the Drift Design Module Options and configure the gradual slope change parameters. 
  2. Select the command “Draw Center Line” (PLDT) and start drawing a center line from scratch or from a previously drawn center line. 
  3. In the window, select a direction and configure the other parameters: Start elevation, Slope, and Radius. Toggle the options “Draw walls” to insert the 2D walls, which follow the path of the centerline. 
  4. Click OK and draw the centerline. Once finished, hit Enter, enter a value for the gradual slope change in the window and click OK. 
  5. To edit the centerline, select the command “Edit Elevations” (PLED). In addition to editing the parameters of the center line, you may also link center lines by elevations, enter an advance rate and a start date as well. 
  6. Once the center line has been configured, select the command “Construct 3D Model” (PL3D) to start constructing the 3D drift. 
  7. In the window, configure the shape of the drift then select the target layer. Select the option “Use the match with the centerline” to assign the drift the same layer as the center line. 
  8. If the advance rate and start date of the centerline is configured, select the options “Divide the model per month” and “Use month colors” to color code the 3D drift based on months. 
  9. Once the 3D drifts options are configured, click OK and the 3D model of the drift will be constructed. 
  10. To insert a legend for the months colors, go to the Essentials Category -> Promine Tools -> Insert Legend -> select the option “Color by time periods” -> Choose the desired months and enter a scale -> Select the options “Text in color” and “Insert solid”. Click OK and insert the legend. 
  11. Now, you can view which parts of the drifts will be constructed in which months, depending on the advance rate and start date of each center line.  
Create an Orebody and Optimize Stopes | Tip Of The Month

Create an Orebody and Optimize Stopes | Tip Of The Month

In this tip of the month, we will see how construct a 3D Model of an orebody from a block model and then perform stope optimization. This will allow to clearly view the high-grade zones and have an idea of where to advance the development. To do so: 


  1. Insert the Block Model in the drawing
  2. Using the command “Cut 1 Section” (SEC1), cut 2 sections limiting the extend of the orebody longitudinally
  3. In each section, draw a polyline contouring the high-grade blocks
  4. Go back to Plan view and have only the sections turned on 
  5. Using the command “Construct 3D Model” (3DMD), construct a 3D Model by selecting both polylines from both sections. There are 3 options to do so, using the “Automatic” option will automatically connect both polylines based on the closest vertex. 
  6. Using the command “Compute Model” (STDM), calculate the total tonnage inside of the 3D Model and trim the blocks to the 3D Model by selecting the option “Keep trimmed blocks”; the program will insert a small report summarizing the total tonnage and average grade 
  7. Using the command “Stope layout optimization” (STDOPT), adjust the cost parameters and set a range for the stope height’ the program will optimize and insert the stopes based on the grades of the block model and the setup of the stop size.