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Streetwise Ned Goodman on commodities, QE and Barrick’s copper mine

Bay Street financier Ned Goodman is one of the four independent directors Barrick nominated after shareholders staged a mini-revolt after the company awarded incoming chairman John Thornton a $11.9-million bonus.

Yvonne Berg/The Globe and Mail

Barrick Gold Corp. shareholders take note: Bay Street financier Ned Goodman has opinions and he is going to share them whether you like them or not.

Mr. Goodman is one of the four independent directors Barrick nominated after shareholders staged a mini-revolt after the company awarded incoming chairman John Thornton a $11.9-million bonus.

Mr. Goodman has proven to be a controversial choice because he supported Mr. Thornton's bonus and came to Barrick chairman and founder Peter Munk's defence at the company's annual meeting of shareholders last year.

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Shareholders speculate that the fix was in for Mr. Goodman's nomination to the Barrick board.

Mr. Goodman has a long history of mining in Canada. He was chosen and approved by the Barrick board in December. Shareholders will vote on his nomination at this year's AGM.

Speaking to a crowd at the annual Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) convention in Toronto, Mr. Goodman said the following:

On his general view of commodities:

"If you think it's all about money and all about gold, you're right."

On the U.S. Federal Reserve's stimulus program known as quantitative easing:

"We have been living in what I have been calling a Botox environment. The stimulus that has put out by the American Federal Reserve has really been like Botox. It's trying to make the United States pretty, and as a result there has been tremendous buying of stocks on the U.S. market."

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On China's motive for buying gold "I think their intention is get gold to eliminate the U.S. dollar as a world reserve currency. The impact of that is enormous. It is going to be enormous in the sense that it just means that the United States is possibly in bankruptcy. The Chinese are preparing to do something with all this gold."

Where we are in the commodity cycle:

(Mr. Goodman said he got the quote from Canadian philanthropist and miner Seymour Schulich who got it from Warren Buffett)

"A bullish market is like sex, it's always best just before the end and we are just before the end."

On Barrick's copper mine (Equinox, which Barrick loaded up its balance sheet with debt to acquire):

"Barrick will likely try to sell its copper mine."

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