NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Westmoreland Coal (WLB - Get Report), Compania de Minas Buenaventura (BVN - Get Report) and Alexco Resource (AXU - Get Report) posted gains last week, while Golden Star Resources (GSS - Get Report), MAG Silver (MVG) and North American Palladium (PAL - Get Report) were among the major decliners.
Coal producers Westmoreland Coal and Alliance Resource Partners (ARLP - Get Report) were among the gainers, increasing 9.4% and 1.5%, respectively, this past week. Meanwhile, gold and silver producers Compania de Minas Buenaventura and Alexco Resources rose 4.5% and 3.9%, respectively.
Golden Star Resources led the pack of losers last week, down 20.9%. MAG Silver slumped 17.1%. Gold prices slipped 4.05% to $1,666.57 per ounce, while silver prices dipped 5% to $31.31 per ounce at close last week.
North American Palladium lost 16.6% at close this past week. Alpha Natural Resources (ANR) slumped 16.3% after investor sentiment sagged on developments like the euro debt crisis, Goldman Sachs lowering its view on the coal sector to neutral from attractive and ANR's $200 million settlement over Massey's mine accident in 2010.Gold producers U.S. Gold (UXG) and IAMGOLD (IAG) dropped 15.2% and 14.7%, respectively, as gold prices declined. James River Coal (JRCC) lost 14.7%, after analysts at Tudor Pickering initiated coverage on the stock with a hold rating. Hecla Mining (HL) lost 14.6% at close last week. Furthermore, Agnico-Eagle Mines (AEM) tumbled 14.3%. Coeur d'Alene Mines (CDE) dipped 13.6% on the ongoing court proceedings against the company in respect of payment of claims to injured workers at its mines. Silver producers Silver Wheaton (SLW) and Endeavour Silver (EXK) were down 12.6% and 12.1% last week, respectively. Harmony Gold Mining (HMY) declined 11.9% after the company revealed that it has suspended operations at its Hidden Valley joint venture facility in Papua New Guinea after an earthquake on Dec. 14. Last week, it was also known that HMY has requested the U.K Financial Services Authority to cancel the listing of the company's ordinary shares on the U.K Official List. Alumina (AWC) edged 11.3% lower at close last week after China's alumina prices declined further reaching production costs as imports surged and destocking by smelters increased domestic supplies. Royal Gold (RGLD) lost 11.2% after analysts at MLV & Co. lowered its price target from $97 to $93. Mining giants Vale (VALE), BHP Billiton (VALE) and Rio Tinto (RIO) wiped out 7.5%, 7.2% and 7.0% at close last week, respectively.