Australian gold stocks have soared, after yet another set of weak US economic data was released overnight.

A report showed that US service industries expanded at the slowest pace in six years saw the probability of the US Federal Reserve raising rates this month sink to 24%. That’s despite chair Janet Yellen announcing last week that the case for raising rates had ‘strengthened’, and weaker than expected manufacturing data.

Several analysts and market commentators suggest that as much as the US Fed wants to start lifting rates, it can’t really do that unless there’s economic data that shows the economy is strong enough to support it.

If and when the US does finally start lifting interest rates, that will be bad news for gold and gold stocks. But until the music stops, gold shares will keep on dancing.

Here are today’s early moves.

Company Last Price Market Cap ($m) Gain
West African Resources Ltd (ASX: WAF) $0.36 $172.4 18.0%
OceanaGold Corporation (ASX: OGC) $4.98 $93.6 11.4%
Saracen Mineral Holdings Limited (ASX: SAR) $1.50 $1,205.3 10.7%
Beadell Resources Ltd (ASX: BDR) $0.41 $433.6 6.5%
Gold Road Resources Ltd (ASX: GOR) $0.66 $573.5 8.2%
Alacer Gold Corp – CDI (ASX: AQG) $3.44 $237.0 8.2%
Cardinal Resources Ltd (ASX: CDV) $0.56 $166.6 8.7%
Ramelius Resources Limited (ASX: RMS) $0.51 $267.9 7.4%
Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) $4.44 $2,666.4 6.2%
Perseus Mining Limited (ASX: PRU) $0.54 $548.0 5.9%
EVOLUTION FPO (ASX: EVN) $2.51 $3,860.0 5.9%
Resolute Mining Limited (ASX: RSG) $2.10 $1,383.7 3.5%
Dacian Gold Ltd (ASX: DCN) $3.81 $508.4 4.5%
Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX: NCM) $23.35 $17,898.0 3.3%

Source: Google Finance

The spot gold price gained 2% overnight to US$1,353.40 a tonne. At the current exchange rate of US 76.7 cents, Australian gold miners are receiving around A$1,764 an ounce. With all-in sustaining costs of between A$1,000 and A$1,100 an ounce, they are making huge margins.

No wonder the market is pushing the shares higher.

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Motley Fool writer/analyst Mike King doesn't own shares in any companies mentioned. You can follow Mike on Twitter @TMFKinga

The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.