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11/5/16

Proof if need be that you gringos will buy anything

Seabridge Gold (SA) (SEA.to) filed the 43-101 compliant PEA for its KSM project Friday evening. Initial capex is U$5.5Bn. The post-tax IRR at spot gold is 8.0%, if you use U$1,500/oz gold it moves up to 11.4%. I downloaded it at 8:15pm last night. Went to bed laughing. Woke up laughing. Still laughing now.

11/4/16

Continental Gold (CNL.to): Interesting news from Buriticá

This from the leading expert on Colombia's mining scene, Paul Harris of The Colombia Gold Letter. It starts like this:

"Continental Gold received widespread support Friday for the development of an underground gold mine at Buritica, Antioquia during a public hearing held as part of its environmental license permitting process.  Some 700 people participated at the public hearing at which the majority of registered speakers, including town mayor Humberto Castaño, voiced support for the project, with many..."

Full report right here. Go read.

The Friday OT: Ólafur Arnalds, Alice Sara Ott: The Chopin Project; Reminiscence

A remarkable and beautiful piece of music and video.



Youtube here.

A Flash update...

...has just been sent to subscribers of The IKN Weekly, Friday morning just after 11am local time. A bit of news about one of the covered companies.

Standing up to bullies, Porter Stansberry edition

Hey folks, remember that defamation lawsuit that the proven securities fraudster Porter Stansberry opened against this humble corner of cyberspace earlier in the year? Well the news is...no news. First he opened the docket in late April, then came a flurry of additions, but since late July there has been absolutely nothing added to the docket. Not a sausage for 102 days.

And that's what happens when somebody who tells the truth about these scumbags stands up to them and is not cowed by their bullyboy legal tactics. These cockroaches suddenly realize that they don't want the truth about their scumbag ways to go on a legal record, they realize they'll just flush a whole bunch of their ill-gotten gains down the toilet in legal fees and, most important of all, they cannot win. And so they scuttle off out of the light and pretend it didn't happen, like the true cowards they are.




Now that's what I call a site visit report

The PDF report is called "Sapphire Rush in the Jungle East of Ambatondrazaka, Madagascar", it happened October 21st to 26th (i.e. just a few days go) it's by gem trader Rosey Perkins and it's a great read that's taken up at least a part of my morning. 

My thanks to reader B for sending in the link. Hopefully this post means more people will enjoy the report as much as I did.

11/3/16

Brent Cook Dishes Out The Dirt

With a title like that, maybe he's looking to take over IKN. He's welcome to it, frankly.

Anyway, it's all on this 10 minute Kitco vid featuring Cambone.


El Tambor in Guatemala: "This is a dog licence with the word 'dog' crossed out and 'cat' written in in crayon"

Hopefully there's a solid percentage of the IKN readership who recognize that as a line from this...



...the Monty Python Fish Licence sketch. It's also a reasonable mirror on the tosh and nonsense Simon Ridgway has been broadcasting about his poor hard-done-by hard-luck story at El Tambor (a.k.a. La Puya), the mine Radius Gold (RDU.v) flogged to the suckers at KCA (and hi there dkappes AT yourmailaddress, great to see you tuning in these days). Thing is y'see, Ridgway gets all uppity when you point out the fact that El Tambor was an illegal mining operation. "Oh no it isn't", comes the reply, "it was permitted and had a licence and everything".

Well...yeah. It did indeed have its operating permit, but the problem is that piece of paper was about as valid as the Cat Licence from the Ministry of Housinge*. The permit RDU/KCA received for El Tambor was illegally awarded and that's not just my spouting opinion either but the opinion, nay the ruling, of the Guatemala judiciary at the highest court in the country. And that's why they closed down the mine Simon, it was operating illegally. But that doesn't stop RDU coming on the arrogant twats in public declarations and trying to make out the Guatemala government is stopping mining. If the arrogant twats at RDU just stopped and thought for more than five seconds, they might just be able to recognize that a country's judiciary is not a country's government.

They also might want to consider just how far they'd like to talk about the details of an illegal permit they were awarded by a government administration now shown to be utterly corrupt by subsequent investigations, because it sure would be interesting to find out how they managed to get the government minister at the time to sign off on a permit that had not been correctly obtained.


*it's spelled like that on the van

Mailbag

This from A. Nice. Reader regarding the Joe Mazumdar presentation yesterday, found here on the blog (and still well worth your time). 

Great post on Joe Mazumdar's speech "Don't get fooled again." Lot of good advice in there, thanks. One of my favorites: "Keep looking at every new press release [from a junior] and see if it negates your thesis." It would make sense too, that in the junior mining world, generally speaking, every new piece of information points to INCREASES in odds of that project failing. Most press releases will negate your thesis, since most projects fail. Instead most investors come at each press release with confirmation bias and try to make the facts fit their theory or explain why they are already up 25% in the stock and its the next 10 bagger. I've done that once; once and never again! Your blog and the Ottotranslator have certainly helped me sharpen up and its paid off considerably, in both dollars made and in an even greater amount of dollars avoided being lost. I can't stress that enough, avoiding big losses is really the name of the game over the long haul.  Anyway, keep 'em coming!

Thanks. And yes 100% agreed, avoiding the losses is the long-haul trick in this crazy sector.

A quick list of 3q16 financials...

...according to the crazy views and biased, uneducated opinions of your humble scribe after first scans of a bunch of 3q16 financials from producing miners, filed between last night and this morning:

  • Torex: Good. Not my fave for non-ops reasons, but undeniably good economics at the mine and it's now delivering well
  • B2Gold: Good (see previous post)
  • Kinross: Crappy (and before you point to the impairment, the Maricunga snafu was their own fault, the hit is a real one and not just accounting)
  • Wesdome: Reasonably good, though "difficult conditions" for the Kiena drilling is a slight bummer...patience needed I suppose.
  • McEwen Mining: Mediocre, will the market give Robbie Mac his usual free pass?
  • HudBay: Good, impressive costs reductions, but still not making enough money to pay down the debt significantly. 
  • Great Panther Silver: You mean it actually managed to deliver a quarterly net profit for once? Okay, not much of one either, and did you see them slip in the paperwork for an equity raising late last week, all quiet and under cover? No? Well I did. Jeesh you gringos will buy anything...

Other names, no opinions. Have a pleasant morning.

Is Yamana Gold (YRI.to) (AUY) going to do the decent thing...

...and male an official pronouncement on the death of one of its employees while perfoming their duties like the normal, high standard Top Table gold mining companies do?

Or is Peter Marrone going to go the same route as Kevin MacArthur of Tahoe Resources (TAHO) (THO.to) and sneakily try to hide employee deaths at its mines by covering the incidents up and refusing to acknowledge them in public?

Inquiring minds...

Chart of the day is...

...the British Pound/US Dollar forex, five days:



Pesky lawyers and judges with their pesky laws...

The Chicago Cubs

One hundred and eight years.

B2Gold (BTG) (BTO.to) 3q16 financials

B2Gold (BTG) (BTO.to) reported this evening (RegFs filed to SEDAR, no news release yet) and here are just two charts of several hundred we'll do at the weekend:
Operating earnings per share came in at 7.6c, slightly down on the IKN forecast of 8.4c but that's because I got the depreciation/depletion/amortization charge low (which is non-cash in the end), so no biggie.


A better bit of guesswork over at the balance sheet, we're the IKN estimate was for working capital of U$115m and the reality is U$114.885...that's a win for the house model, but more importantly shows the strong liquidity levels and free cash flow generation going on here.

All in all a fine looking quarter from The Clive & Co. As long as gold prices don't dump on us tomorrow B2 should go higher on these numbers.

UPDATE: The NR is out.

11/2/16

The Yamana (AUY) (YRI.to) gold robbery at Jacobina: Reuters says 2,000 oz gold

In this report (Though YRI is still being coy).

IKN leads, Reuters follows.  Anyway, it might turn out to be 1/10th of the local rumour number, but when it comes to this company you can't trust a thing. Hey Marrone, does that mean the violent death of the employee at your mine only 10% died?

Don't Get Fooled Again

Joe Mazumdar* gave a presentation at the Zurich Precious Metals Summit this morning called "Don't Get Fooled Again" and by the wonders of science you can see a recording of it all, including the presentation slides, by clicking this link

It's really good and the Shakespeare bodycount is 100% accurate, too. Well worth your time.

*The smart and handsome one of the Exploration Insights pairing

Joyous news! The TSX Venture now accepts four letter symbols

It's always been three maximum, but as from yesterday the TSX Venture Exchange now allows companies to use four 4-letter ticker symbols. Therefore, and in the same spirit as some of IKN's fave ticker symbols, we offer a few ideas of corporate titles that could make for interesting and certainly apt tickers, knowing the normal quality levels and investability of Canadian juniors:

  • Prime Uranium Mining Prospectors
  • Direct Uranium Mining Prospectors
  • Sulfide Copper Automated Machinery
  • West Africa Nickel and Kaolin
  • Salvador Honduras Iron and Titanium
  • Associated Rhodium Scandium Enterprises

If readers would care to contribute other ideas, you know the mail address.

UPDATE: That didn't take long.

Reader C: "Ferro Uranium Queensland-Unlimited"
Reader L: "Canadian Resource Associated Partners"

And more...

Diamond Island Corporation (of the) Klondike
New Ontario Power Exploration
Canadian Rhodium & Alternative Power
Toronto Weed Applications Technologies
Vancouver Inbred Lithium Extortionists (particularly like that one, J)
Porter's Indiscreet Mining Protips
Javanese Uranium Nickel Korp
Local-Interest Energy Solutions
First International Banking Syndicate

Though I remind readers who have offered several ideas on a certain acronym that K92 got there first :-)

Chart of the day is...

...gold, dailies:


I know IKN is a US Election Free Zone until November 9th minimum and that's not going to change. But the pattern of gold moving down on continuation of status quo and up on disruption of status quo (be they real, potential, speculated or any other way) is too obvious not to mention today.

If you needed proof that Brazil Resources (BRI.v) is a total bullshit scam from start to finish...

...check out the latest pumpjob, put together by one  of the Porter Stansberry scumbags, Frank Curzio, right here on this link. Specifically designed for people with an IQ of 80 or less, the debate on what the highlight of this long exercise in scamming has been intense:

  • Is it the framing of Titiribi as economic?
  • Is it calling the mystery CEO "Adam" (now...seriously...that's funny)
  • Is it the U$3,000 discounted price for joining now, saving you U$2,000 from the normal price?

Let us be clear: Brazil Resources (BRI.v) has always been a stock pump, its worthless "assets" (term used loosely) promoted from its inception by a whole litany of paid-pumpers. But this new pump job removes all doubt, a stock for morons only.

11/1/16

Yamana Gold (AUY) (YRI.to) has a reported 20,000oz of gold stolen in Brazilian robbery

This is the type of thing I miss while on the road. My thanks to reader H who sent in the heads-up and the links and impressively, there's been a total lack of news in English language circles on this.

According to a whole bunch of Portuguese language reports released on October 26th and 27th examples here, here here and here) after a local, Portuguese-language only presser from the local mine, on October 17th 10 thieves armed to the teeth with high-powered weapons and explosives raided the Yamana Gold (AUY) (YRI.to) Jacobina mine in Brazil. They reduced the guards and in the process one of the guards was killed (unofficial reports say that he was accidentally shot by his own weapon as the robbers were taking it from him). The gang then proceeded to the gold vaults and rather than tackle the sophisticated security and code locking system installed, blew up the safes with explosives.

There's no official word on what they stole as yet, but unofficial local reports state that it was "more than 20,000 oz of gold contained in dore bars".

And amazingly, not a single word from Yamana Gold in English about this incident!
  • No news release
  • Nothing in the 3q16 report and MD&A
  • Nothing in the Conference Call last week.
The violent death of an employee, plus a robbery of a reputed U$25m (twenty five million!) in gold and Peter Marrone just prefers to ignore the thing and hope it goes away? I mean, the lost gold is bad enough but trying to ignore the death of one of the people in his charge like this is simply despicable. The man is not fit to be a CEO.

Catching up with the Filipino Pair Trade

On September 27th, the day the President "GodToldMeNoSwearing" Duterte government of The Philippines announced that 20 mines were under audit and threatened with a licence revoke and closure, we noted the drop in two of the companies affected by the announcement, B2Gold (BTO.to) (BTG) and OceanaGold (OGC.to) in this post, which ended:

"...a decent pair trade looks like long BTO/short OGC from here."

That was then and this is now, the other side of October so check up and see how things are going with that pair:
  • On September 27th, OGC closed at $4.05. Right now it's at $4.08, up 0.7%
  • On September 27th, BTO closed at $3.38. It's now $3.99, up 18.0%

Any further questions?

UPDATED Giustra's paid lackey Keith Schaefer pumps Lithium X (LIX.v)

NB: Please see update below

You can spot the Frank Giustra paid monkeys from a mile away, they all sound the same. Today's the turn of Keith Schaefer and the mailer sent to his list this morning entitled "This Energy Market Desperately Needs Supply", which warbles on about how lithium is the fuel of the future etc etc and then, when you get to the end, the real purpose of his bullshit is revealed:

"That has me excited about a new lithium company—one with prime assets, an award-winning geologist and a board that has built and sold junior companies before.  Now they are focused on lithium and are raising millions of dollars very quickly.

What’s more, the biggest catalyst of its short life is happening within the next 30 days.

You can throw a baseball from their property to a producing well at North America’s largest producing lithium asset.  They have the water rights.  They have the drilling permits.

This company will be getting back their own very first drill results within 30 days—setting the stage for a potential re-rating by the Market.

In two days I’ll give you the name and symbol—for free."

Wow! For free, Keith? Really? All for free and no cost? Hot damn and jiggerty that sooooooo nice of you! Nothing in it for you at all? Not trying to take advantage of my good nature by making me pay? Oh Keith, you're so nice and smiley-photo, you're the tops.

Thoughts arising:
  • In two days time Schaefer's pumping LithiumX (LIX.v) for his paymaster Frank Giustra. It's what market whores do for money. They sleep well at night afterwards, too.
  • Expect the other current Giustra performing monkey, Tommy Humphreys of CEO.ca, to get all breathless and onanistic about LIX in the days to come too, this is going to be another Frank Giustra full-court press pump to sheep retail as the main man unloads more shares.

UPDATE: The thrust of the above is still correct and Shaefer is still a paid whore and a Giustra lackey, but it seems I may have got the vehicle wrong this time so this update is necessary. A. Reader kindly puts me right with a mail that includes this (slightly edited to protect both innocent and guilty)

It's not LIX they are pumping, it's AAL
5 reasons
1) The "Award Winning Team" is all AAL talks about.
2) The "Stone's Throw Away From Producer" fits AAL.
3) He talks about a new company.
4) The big one, in the teaser he said they have water rights in Clayton Valley. Fact is, there is only one junior stock with water rights there and that's AAL.
5) AAL just announced drilling and drilling results to come in over the next 30 days.

Maybe too much traveling? :-)

So thanks for that kind reader "M", always appreciate being set right by smarter people than I. And yeah, definitely agree about too much travelling.

Shutting stable door after horse bolts, Primero Mining (PPP) (P.to) edition

Today, this humble corner of cyberspace notes with wry amusement that Primero Mining (PPP) (P.to) has appointed one Patricia Fortier, a Canadian career diplomat, to its board of directors. We also note her long experience, her excellent qualifications and we are sure that she's a leading member of her chosen profession.

However, your humble scribe cannot help but think that such diplomatic nous might have been extremely useful back in February 2016 when the company made the absolutely indefensible and utterly insane decision to take the host country of its biggest mining operation to an International Tribunal court within a matter of months of the dispute with its tax authority beginning. As Ms Fortier is a Spanish speaker among her other undoubted diplomatic skills, it would seem part of her brief will be to untangle the unholy mess her fellow board members have created via their crass stupidity.



10/31/16

A question for Joseph Gallucci of Dundee Capital Markets...

...who put a neutral call and a 35c price target on Atico Mining (ATY.v) on August 18th when the stock stood at 59c.

How you feelin' 'bout that call, Joseph?

Thing is Joseph, both you and I know that balance sheets are important. But what's even more important is knowing how they work. 

Disclosure: Yeah I'm long, how did you guess? Current price target getting into view, too.

Zimtu trying to peddle worthless assets to desperate juniors? Say it ain't so!

Even a three cent stock like BZ.v has a little self-esteem.

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Oct 31, 2016) - Benz Mining Corp. (TSX VENTURE:BZ) ("Benz" or the "Company"), announces the termination of the Option Agreement (the "Agreement") with Zimtu Capital Corp. ("Zimtu") to acquire up to a 100% interest in the Lithium project ("Property") located in the province of Newfoundland & Labrador.
The decision was made following non-satisfactory results of the detail due diligence investigation of the property, and minimum requirements to meet standard closing conditions.


Come the revolution it's the David Hodges of this world who will be first up against the wall.

K2 fires another broadside at Asanko Gold (AKG)

This morning sees another missive from K2 regarding its short position in Asanko, a 33 page PDF with all the details mapped out that reaffirms their conviction that AKG is going to be toast one of these fine days. It's too big a document for this humble corner of cyberspace but we can at least show you the contents of the overview page, below. If you want a copy of the whole thing I'm quite sure that if you sent a mail over to K2 they'd send you one by return (edit: Or go here). As for me, I'm neutral on this story for the time being. I think the K2 argument has merit, but so far at least AKG hasn't shown the type of production weakness they're expecting. Therefore as far as IKN is concerned it's a fun spectator sport...a bit like gladiators in ancient Rome.

Anyway, here's the paste-out of the K2 cover page today:

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

1. Not getting the gold
• Asanko appears to be mining significantly less gold compared to the Definitive Project Plan (DPP), despite mining more material
• The gap between the DPP and actual results has grown to an estimated 84koz
• In Q3, we believe the Company mined deeper than plan down the high grade ‘throat’ of the orebody, and yet the gap continued to widen substantially
 
2. We believe the reason Asanko is experiencing a gold shortfall, is because much of it is not there
• In line with our original thesis, we believe negative gold reconciliation is the cause of Asanko’s under-performance to date
• We do not believe the Company’s selective “reconciliations” are representative of the aggregate problem
• Asanko should have the aggregate data to discredit our initial thesis, we find it unusual that they are not showing it despite vocally contesting our work
 
3. Not getting the cash
• Asanko’s2016 free cash flow is unlikely to come close to the DPP forecast of $91M
• The Company needs to generate $124M of FCF in H2 2016 to meet this target according to our estimates
• The Company needs to generate $164M of FCF in H2 2016 to meet what we estimate is a more appropriate benchmark given their accelerated mining activities
• We believe Asanko will experience a year 1 FCF shortfall ~30% the size of their total original Phase 1 NAV of $412M (5% DCF, $1,300/ozgold)
 
4. To mitigate the likely resource issues we perceive at Nkran, we believe Asankowill have to:
• Mine the ore bearing zone at ~2x the rate initially planned
• Defer waste stripping obligations
…If Asanko adopts this approach, it has the potential to significantly shorten Nkran’s mine life


UPDATE: The full K2 report can be found here.

Tahoe Resources (TAHO) (THO.to): Ellen Moore exposes the company BS on Escobal

I'm a little late to this due to travel commitments, but thanks to eagle-eyed reader 'S' we bring you this, from the Reno Gazette-Journal last week.

First up, remember back to early September when Edie Hofmeister of Tahoe Resources wrote an op-ed in the same Reno newspaper calling criticism of TAHO at its Escobal mine in Guatemala "unfounded"? The same Edie who has decided to leave Reno because she can't stand the sight or sound of Ron Clayton decided to put pen to paper in the cause of her best pal's husband, Ferrari Kev (the real reason she got the cushy job) and told the world that TAHO had overwhelming support in the local community around the mine, that they were hearts and flowers with everyone, all that shtick.

Well now we get a far more accurate appraisal of the situation in San Rafael Las Flores from a right-of-reply piece written by Ellen Moore, a person who lived and worked in the zone for many years. Here it is below and though it's not the usual habit of IKN to lift a whole story from somewhere else, this one needs as many eyeballs as possible. Read on:

In Edie Hofmeister’s piece (“One View: Criticism of Tahoe Resources' Escobal mine biased, unfounded”, Sept. 14), she invites critics to visit its mine in San Rafael Las Flores, Guatemala to understand what is really going on. Not only did I visit, I worked in the region for several years and served as an international observer at the Sábana Redonda referenda or “consulta” that Ms. Hofmeister references in the piece. I joined national and international observers who were present for this vote as they have been at all of the more than 70 referenda on mining that have taken place across Guatemala since 2005.
In the article, Hofmeister upholds Sábana Redonda as the “only reliable vote in the area” – convenient, given that every other vote in the region has overwhelmingly rejected Tahoe’s mine.
Tahoe’s ongoing attempts to delegitimize local decision-making processes is disrespectful of Guatemalans’ democratic practices. Tahoe has filed and supported lawsuits challenging the municipal votes against its project in an attempt to prevent the population from exercising their legitimate right to decide their future. In response, Guatemala’s highest court ruled that municipal authorities not only have the right, but the responsibility to convene such votes and to make decisions according to their results.

In San Rafael las Flores, the pro-mining mayor prevented a municipal-wide vote on the Escobal mine. Local leaders who had collected signatures demanding a referenda were slapped with unsubstantiated legal charges by Tahoe employees or people associated with the company. Undeterred, citizens organized village votes instead, carrying out eight before a state of siege, likened to martial law, was declared by the government in May 2013.

Sábana Redonda was the ninth village vote and the only one that took place after the siege. The community is located next to the mine and many people who live there benefit from mining-related employment. Having provided third-party observation for many referenda, I can confidently say that the vote in Sábana Redonda was carried out in the same manner as other local votes — on all subjects, not just mining. Schoolteachers served as election officials, and votes were cast using a paper ballot inside a booth just like in the U.S.

However, the fact that the vote was 55 to 45 percent is not, as Ms. Hofmeister implies, a demonstration of support, but rather a testament to the polarization of one of the communities that has received the most direct economic benefit from Tahoe’s operations.
Tahoe’s crumbling social license is well-documented. September 2015 elections reaffirmed or brought to power six pro-consultation mayors, most of whom campaigned on platforms anchored by opposition to mining and refusal to accept royalties. Bolstered by the court’s decision upholding the legitimacy of the votes, citizens near Tahoe's operations continue to demand referenda, and mayors point to the results as grounds to refuse royalties.
It’s true that the communities surrounding the Escobal mine are not financially wealthy. What Tahoe does not understand is that people’s dignity, clean water and livelihoods are not for sale.

Question: Why is Kirkland Lake (KLG.to) up today?

Answer: There's a chance Makuch gets booted out.

End of Q&A session. (Though heaven help the company if Ferrari Kev is the mystery interloper).

Chart of the day is...

...copper, weeklies:


The fun never stops, copper bouncing around in its technical cage. So, breakout or breakdown? And when? But whatever the answers, remember the most important thing about this day, kind readership:


10/30/16

The IKN Weekly, out now

IKN390 has just been sent to subscribers. The main event this week is a site visit, so lots of photos to help pad out the near-17,000 words of script. All good clean fun.

The top three most visited IKN posts this week are...

...in reverse order and in a slightly different format for one week only:

Third Place: "Mr. Prospector". Alex Black is back.


Second Place: "Global Mining Observer interviews David Garofalo of Goldcorp (GG)"., pointing the way to GMO's excellent interview with Goldcorp's head honcho.

 
First Place: "The Trio Of Daniel Ameduri Posts". It started with this very short one during the week, "Scumbag Frank Giustra just played Daniel Ameduri for the greenhorn patsy he is", then we went to this one on Friday, "You have to have a serious coke habit..." as a further tease of the story, then on Saturday IKN relented and spilled beans in this one, "Daniel Ameduri's stupidity" and that's the one that matters in this trio. These were by far the most hit posts of the week, collectively and individually. You all seem to want dirt on Ameduri, Giustra and Giustra's seedy band of market rip-off merchants. Funny dat...