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Why Newcrest, Northern Star & the rest of the gold miners were smashed today

The S&P/ASX 200 index had a disappointing start to the month on Thursday, falling 0.35% to 6,788.9 points.

One area of the market that performed particularly poorly was the gold industry. Sizeable declines were made by many of Australia’s biggest gold miners, leading to the S&P/ASX All Ords Gold index falling by a whopping 4.15%.

Here’s a snapshot of the industry after the market close on Thursday:

The Evolution Mining Ltd (ASX: EVN) share price fell 3.8% to $4.83.

The Newcrest Mining Limited (ASX: NCM) share price tumbled 3.9% lower to $34.20.

The Northern Star Resources Ltd (ASX: NST) share price plunged 7.2% to $12.07.

The OceanaGold Corp (ASX: OGC) share price dropped 4.4% to $3.96.

The Resolute Mining Limited (ASX: RSG) share price sank 5.4% to $1.68.

The Saracen Mineral Holdings Limited (ASX: SAR) share price dropped 3.3% to $4.05.

The Silver Lake Resources Limited (ASX: SLR) share price fell 6.9% to $1.22.

The St Barbara Ltd (ASX: SBM) share price tumbled 4.6% to $3.53.

Why were the gold miners smashed?

Investors were quick to hit the sell button when the gold price sank to a two-week low after the U.S. Federal Reserve cut rates by 0.25% but dampened hopes of more rate cuts by referring to this as a “midcycle adjustment to policy”.

Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell explained: “Let me be clear: What I said was it’s not the beginning of a long series of rate cuts. I didn’t say it’s just one or anything like that. When you think about rate-cutting cycles, they go on for a long time and the committee’s not seeing that. Not seeing us in that place. You would do that if you saw real economic weakness and you thought that the federal funds rate needed to be cut a lot. That’s not what we’re seeing.”

This appears to have put to an end to predictions that the gold price will be heading materially higher over the next 12 months and led to many investors hitting the sell button today.

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Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. 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 Scott Phillips.

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