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George Carlin: We like war

What's changed in the 21 years since this was taped?

1) VCRs don't get made anywhere these days
2) Name of the incumbent President
3) Geographic location of the latest war
4) Nothing else.

Some material to help you digest the latest Pentagon plans for Syria. And if you can't see this vid because it's blocked in your area, there are several options of the same thing here

Peru's stock market performance: Lipsticking that pig

Your humble scribe this weekend notes a distinct uptick in the quantity of noise from the business and financial community in Lima Peru this week regarding its stock market, the Bolsa de Valores de Lima (BVL). Quick to jump on the metal-related rebound, we're offered up the gushing headline from the State's official Andina news agency that the "BVL shows upward trend and rises 9.59% in the last three weeks", while the country's main bizrag, Gestión, gives us "The BVL rises to its best level of the last three months" and tellingly, "Mining stocks in the BVL advance 15% in the last three weeks", in which the local flunkey stockbroker is wheeled out to tell us how things look great and the future is etc etc yada yada ad infinitum zzzzzz.......

What?!? Sorry!?! Oh yeah, Peru markets, here's the BVL's main index the IGBVL "General", for 2013. The S&P500 index is put in for context.

Strange how they've kept all silent til now about their market, is it not? 

Moral: The English language has no monopoly over financial bullshit.


Round Six! The "Friday-Night-Bury-That-News-While-Market-Players-Are-At-Happy-Hour" NR stakes

It has to be Dorato Resources (DRI.v) for this week's attempt at current affairs burial. Never mind all that guff and nonsense about Cajamarca (as if we don't read news reports, Gordie), your author's red highlights bring all eyes to the moneyline quickly. It's the best news possible for the locals up there. Celebration time for the Awajún of Cenepa, huevo en cara para Carlos Ballón,
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Aug. 23, 2013) - Dorato Resources Inc. ("Dorato" or the "Company") (TSX VENTURE:DRI)(DO5.F) announces that it will be proceeding with the next work program on its Deborah property, in southern Cajamarca region, which will consist of about 800 metres of hand trenching and channel sampling on both the Central and Northeast targets ( As well, the soil sample grid at the Northeast Target will be extended to the north to close off the multi-element anomaly there. The work program is subject to the Company raising adequate funding.
Due to current market conditions, the Company was unable to raise sufficient funds to cover the title payments on the properties within the Cordillera del Condor, located in northern Peru. The mineral titles have been allowed to expire, as required under Peruvian law.
To view the map associated with this press release, please visit the following link:
The Company continues to review properties of merit in Peru.
Dorato will be holding its Annual General and Special Meeting of shareholders on September 27, 2013. At the meeting, in addition to appointing the directors and auditors, the shareholders will be asked to vote on a resolution to consolidate the Company's share capital on a 20:1 basis, which will help facilitate the Company in raising funds for the exploration program on the Deborah property. 
About Dorato Resources Inc.
Dorato Resources Inc. is mineral exploration company focused on the highly prospective Northern Peru copper-gold porphyry-epithermal belt. The Cajamarca Region is an established mining district with excellent infrastructure.
On behalf of the board of directors of Dorato Resources Inc.
Gord Neal, Director

President Rafael Correa climbs Cotapaxi

Cotapaxi is perhaps Ecuador's most famous peak, a stratovolcano that reaches 19,347 feet above sea level. And this week Rafa climbed it.

Having been over 20,000 feet on a climb just once and knowing what that means in terms of effort, he gets serious kudos from your humble scribe. All the official Rafa photos here.

ps: link now fixed

Ben Bernanke, portrait of the artist as a young man

This is going round the interwebnetpipes this morning, with the source (I think, after a 15 second hunt) apparently this tweet from Justin Wolfers here. So let's stick it on IKN for posterity's sake:

To be honest, if I were Ben B I'd be reasonably proud of that photo, hindsight and all.

  • Pleasant smile and demeanour (that's not so easy via a photo)
  • Fashionably long hair (check the birth date)
  • Styled and cared-for tache.
  • Un-stupid shirt.

So take the flak Benny, then stand proud about the mugshot. You were OK back then.

President Dilma Rousseff slips her security guard cordon and escapes for a motorbike ride in Brasilia

Folha has the political anecdote of the day here. In it, we hear of the time that President Dilma casually told her Minister for Energy and Mining, Edison Lobao, that she'd recently (no precise date given) escaped from her security cordon and gone for an illicit motorbike ride around the streets of the capital Brasilia. Lobao said that when he heard it from Dilma's lips he didn't believe it at first, until at the end of the conversation the two were joined by her security chief. She said "Even he didn't know about it", but then the security head, Marcos Amaro, replied saying that he'd got wind of the move and had some of his men follow her at a distance, just to make sure and without cramping her style at the time (which apparently surprised Dilma in turn).

As for Lobao's opinion on Dilma's escapade? "It was the President's adventure, she deserves (to do) it. Her job greatly limits her leisure time options, you can't go to theatres, cinemas, restaurants like normal people."

What is it about a trainwreck anyway?

What is the basic, visceral, morbid, human fascination behind them?

Yup, it's Esperanza [es la última que se pierde] Resources (EPZ.v) again.

Argentina default bonds: Argentina's appeal rejected

It happened about 15 minutes ago. Felix Salmon (who adores this story) is the place to watch the fallout on this one develop. His twitter account here, his blog here (he'll surely post later) and he already has the full ruling paper for you here.

Chart of the day is...

...copper, weeklies:

In its two years of bouncing round inside the three dollar range, copper has been remarkably well-behaved. Three point zero zero as a firma baseline (tested again recently), then the $3.30/lb to $3.50/lb range we currently find ourselves is probably the strongest magnetic pull of the lot. Bulls will like the thought that if copper gets popular all of a sudden, the next stop upwards looks like $3.80/lb.

There you go, that should be simplistic enough for all the nodding donkey todamoonalice brigade to start shouting about how they're gonna be rich.


(UPDATED) Esperanza (EPZ.v) and Alamos ( Errrr...toldya?

Excuse me for laughing a very lot indeed. Here's the NR out of Alamos seconds ago:

August 22, 2013
Alamos Comments on Esperanza News Release
TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Aug. 22, 2013) - All amounts are in United States dollars, unless otherwise stated.

Alamos Gold Inc. (TSX:AGI)(NYSE:AGI) ("Alamos" or the "Company") commented on the news release issued earlier today by Esperanza Resources Corp. ("Esperanza") regarding the recent amendment to Article 71 of the Law of Rural Sustainable Development in the State of Morelos, Mexico (the "New Law"). The principal asset of Esperanza, the Esperanza gold project, is located in Morelos.

Alamos and Esperanza entered into an Arrangement Agreement dated July 12, 2013 pursuant to which Alamos offered to purchase all of the issued and outstanding shares of Esperanza (the "Transaction"). Completion of the Transaction is subject to the fulfilment of certain conditions set forth in the Arrangement Agreement.

The New Law came into force on August 15, 2013, after being published in the August 14, 2013 edition of "Tierra Y Libertad", the official newspaper of the state government of Morelos, which is available on the official state government website. In its publication of the announcement of the New Law, the State Government noted that the use of cyanide shall be "restricted" in the State of Morelos, and makes specific reference to the Esperanza gold project, which is planned for Morelos. It is not clear what the nature or extent of the restrictions on the use of cyanide will be under the New Law.

Given that the Esperanza gold project is located in Morelos, and contemplates the use of cyanide in its design plans, Alamos has significant concerns regarding the New Law and is currently working with its legal advisers in Mexico to further clarify the potential effect of the New Law. Alamos was aware of the New Law prior to today's press release by Esperanza, but has not completed its assessment of its potential impact on the viability of the Esperanza gold project.

UPDATE: I've been asked "waddyamean toldyaso?", to which I could point you to blog evidence such as this post at the time of AGI's offer for EPZ which sums it up with "bargain hunters overpaying for idiots". But away from the blog and over at the subscription weekly, we take a more measured view of things and try to be a little less uncouth (not easy, but ah tries ma hardest). Here's the section that contemplates the Esperanza gold project and AGI's then newly-minted offer from that weekend's edition, IKN219 dated July 14th:

That leaves the main “Esperanza” project in the State of Morelos, Mexico (ex-Cerro Jumil, and when a project gets a quiet name change from a junior owner it’s a red flag all by itself), which is the project that recently had its environmental permit turned down by Mexico’s Semarnat environmental body (which is headed by a close ally of President Enrique Peña Nieto and member of his inner circle, Juan José Guerra Abud). Much noise was made by the whining English language commentary brigade in mining circles about this permit denial as they tried hard to cherrypick their data and blame it all on a bunch of lefty enviro-terrorists who’s stopped the project because of a long-neglected historical site nearby. That aspect had a secondary role according to Semarnat in its ruling, but the main reason for permit denial was that the mine would take away too much water supply from agricultural zones nearby and that, ladies and gentlemen, is a real project-killer in Mexico mining these days and will be a tough one to overcome. I’m guessing that McCluskey over at AGI might fancy his chances of bringing the Morelos people round to his way of thinking by being able to show them the producing mines AGI already has in Mexico, but all the same the social opposition to Esperanza is now entrenched and it will be a very tough one to crack, even over a long-term period.  
But as suggested in the first lines of the above, I don’t think this deal is necessarily bad for AGI. Firstly it’s small compared to the company’s current size. Secondly, it adds assets into the corporate structure in exchange for un-needed cash at a time when assets are at distressed sale prices. Those can sit there, pad out the overall in-situ resource count at AGI for a few quarters and then in the event of a sector rebound and new interest from dumb money, get flipped out at a profit in the next round of junior speculation. However, all talk of some sort of intense bidding war for EPZ should be discounted here; AGI has made a smart, lowball and friendly bid that the guys at EPZ need to take (after having made their own mess of things and been hit at the wrong time by a sector downturn). If you hold EPZ today, you’ve been offered a reasonable out and should take it. 
By the way, ‘esperanza’ is Spanish for ‘hope’. You’ve been told enough times already that hope is not a valid investment thesis, I’m sure.

IKN back: Here we are six weeks later from those words and I sure hope all subbers who read that note took the advice and the 90c general offer, rather than hanging round for the deal to close. Because this one is well and truly sexually intercoursed.

Thirty day of gold in Rupees and Dollars

Special delivery for Mister Iwnattos:

August 6th 78k Rupees, today 87,625. That's a 12.3% upmove in 18 14* days (while up 7.0% in dollar terms in the same period). Not bad, and whatever else you might say about the move it kind of helps the splainin on why the Indian subcontinent likes owning the shinystuff. Chart courtesy of the nice Kitco chappies.

*I can't count

Samex Mining Corp (SXG.v), blueprint for hundreds of Canadian exploreco futures

Consider this two year chart of Samex Mining Corp (SXG.v):

Now consider its latest foray into exploration, the "El Gringo" target in Chile which first generated headlines such as this in March:

Hmmm! Encouraging! And then this in May...

Wowsers! Multiple! But last night we had SXG saying this...

...and as a result, SXG this morning did this...

...and market cap is now its cash at bank. No more market cap for its projects. No more goodwill. No more "brains trust". It's residual value time and not a moment too soon.

Yes indeed, even after the precipitous drop seen in the first chart above, SXG was still trading at roughly double its new market cap because up until yesterday's admission, it was still play-faking that El Gringo was a prospective and attractive exploration target and as such worthy of asset value. This is precisely the type of bullshit that Canadian explorecos peddle to the world and sadly it's the bullshit that thousands of naive Canadians swallow, without so much as a second thought, all the time.

Let's repeat that in big bold type and underlined script, in order to make the point clear: Even after the massive drop in 2012 and the first half of 2013, SXG was still way overvalued until it came clean yesterday and admitted its project was a waste of both its time and remaining cash.

This post isn't really about SXG, it's about the hundreds of explorecos who are still sitting on moose pasture assets and still manage to keep a cushion of valuation between the residual (aka TRUE) value of the company and the market cap because they peddle utterly false hopes as worthy of exploration and a potential big winning play. The whole bullshit charade happens in order to justify the positions and salaries of officers and directors and the beaten-to-within-an-inch-of-life shareholder still believes this utter tosh and nonsense (where there's life there's hope etc) because they think things can't get any worse.

They can. And they will. Look again at the SXG ten day chart above, have a good hard stare at what happened to its stock price on volume today. Then I dare you to have a think about it, because that's not just the fate of this company today, it's the fate of hundreds more of these bullshit juniors in the months to come once the money runs out and the faking stops. We've seen a rebound at the better end of the juniors market and I expect that will continue (slowly or more quickly, that up for debate) as long as the underlying metals prices don't deteriorate again. However the bullshit end of the market, run by bullshitters for bullshitters, has an awful lot more pain to go through before this process is done. The wheat must be separated from the chaff and my lordy my stars, there's a whole lot of chaff out there.

Brazil's "Boyfriend Tracker" smartphone app

AP has the story here. IKN offers up a segment for your consideration and decides that further comment is superfluous. You people are smart enough to work out the consequences of this all by yourself:

The app, called "Rastreador de Namorados" (Portuguese for Boyfriend Tracker), promises to act like a "private detective in your partner's pocket."
Functions include sending the person doing the tracking updates on their partner's location and forwarding duplicates of text message traffic from the targeted phone. There is even a command that allows a user to force the target phone to silently call their own, like a pocket dial, so they can listen in on what the person is saying.
full report here

Reuters' hit piece on Peter Munk

Yesterday afternoon's Reuters report on Barrick (ABX) and specifically Peter Munk is well worth your eyetime, as it's your actual classic hit-piece (with plenty of anonymous bitchin' about the boss from insiders) sitting under a somewhat innocuous headline of how Munk 'seeks to regain his Midas touch'. And yeah, Munk deserves it. Euan Rocha is the writer (job nicely done), you can read it all on this link, here's how it kicks off:
Peter Munk has long driven the agenda for Barrick Gold Corp, the company he formed in 1983 and built into the world's largest gold producer, but recent missteps have raised questions about the leadership of a man once seen as a visionary in the industry. 
Munk, who owns a stake of less than a quarter of a percent in the company, still steers Barrick's strategy from his position as chairman, and he is now attempting to shore up the miner's position. But some investors, seizing on what they view as misguided decisions and problems at several mines, are questioning both the company's direction, and Munk's role.
continues here

Chart of the day is... (using GLD as proxy) versus the gold miners (using GDX as proxy), five days:

Here are five lines of script from last weekend's IKN Weekly, which was talking more about the junior mining space that the stocks held by GDX, but it's been working the same:
" the space of mere days we’ve gone from a world that gives too little valuation to profitmaking potential, to one that is baking in higher or much higher gold, silver, etc prices in order to justify new price levels and earnings potentials. If the metals don’t climb further, I predict that the quickest-bouncing stocks that depend on their underlying metal prices at market will have to retrace somewhat."


A LatAm blog solidarity call-out

Dear readers,

It has come to the attention of IKN that Richard Grabman, host of the fine blog on Mexico affairs The Mex Files, was last night victim of a serious burglary that has stripped him of a very significant portion of his net assets, physical, monetary and intellectual.

To the point: It's well known amongst LatAm circles that RG is far too much of a gentleman to ever beg in public, however IKN's standards are much lower than his. Thus this simple post exists to ask anyone who has ever benefitted from his excellent insight into all things Mexico (and there must be many of you) to do the same as your humble scribe, go over to his site, The Mex Files, and make use of the PayPal donation button that's found on the right hand side of his page. It doesn't have to be a lot of money, but anything you could spare to help RG through a tough time for him would surely be appreciated.

Thanks in advance. O

PRD Energy (PRD.v): It would seem that at least a few market participants read this humble corner of cyberspace

Following on from yesterday's post. Though they don't yet understand that Casey Research is chock full of two-faced dumbass morons and criminal scamsters who couldn't pick a piece of candy out of a Crackerjack box.

A plague o' both your houses

Necessary disclosure: No position in PRD.v and absolutely no intention of taking one, either. Assholes.

The TSX short top 20 for August!

Here's the table of the top 20 short positions in the Toronto Exchange (TSX) as per August 15th, just published. Check out the Kinross (KGC) ( position change in the first two weeks of August:

That's a serious downside bet you have there. And Kinross is about 10% up since the start of the month. Full filing right here.

Peru quiz of the day

Via @ensustrece , the required reading twitter account for Peru run by César Hildebrandt.

Who recently said, "An indigenous person who has a cellphone isn't an indigenous person"?

Answer: Nadine Heredia, first lady of Perú, power behind the throne and widely regarded as being the person really running the show behind the trophy husband. What's more said said it while in the process of personally firing a Vice-Minister of Culture because said person had the temerity to do her job and defend the rights of indigenous people against the petroleum industry's designs on the much-coveted Lot 88 project in the Peruvian jungle. And she did the firing even though the First Lady has no official political power at all in Peru.

Tell me again about this left-wing government you guys up North were all trembling about  in 2011?

"Hey Otto, d'you think Hochschild (HOC.L) will continue to sell its position in Gold Resource Corp (GORO) as soon as it possibly can?"

Hmmm, lemme think 'bout that one, dude. Hmmmm...Hold on! What's this I see?

Hochschild Mining plc (HOC.L) announced first-half 2013 pre-tax loss from continuing operations of $48.7 million, as against a profit of $92.26 million last year. Half-yearly loss attributable to equity shareholders of the company from continuing operations was $34.46 million, versus a $26.51 million profit a year before.
For the recent period, loss per ordinary share from continuing operations totaled $0.10, compared with an income of $0.08 in the 2012 period.
Revenue on continuing operations of $308.6 million for the six months, were lower than the prior-year figure of $354.5 million.
In first half of 2013, the company delivered attributable production of 9.7 million silver equivalent ounces, comprising 6.3 million ounces of silver and 57.9 thousand ounces of gold. Hochschild Mining said it remains on track to meet its full-year production target of 20.0 million attributable silver equivalent ounces.
In addition, the directors have not declared an interim dividend for the year 2013.
(your author's highlights)

Regarding Yellen versus Summers

On the eve of Jackson Hole, likely to turn into a Fed gossipfest like no other before, your humble scribe throws his dos centavitos into the mix. 

The case for Janet Yellen has been summed up very well by Edward Harrison in this NYT piece. Here's the showdown section:
Janet Yellen has all of the right qualifications: two top-flight economics degrees, work as a tenured professor at University of California at Berkeley, head of the Council of Economic Advisors, six years as head of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, four years as a voting member of the Federal Reserve's Open Market Committee and three years as vice chairwoman of the entire Federal Reserve System. The Wall Street Journal recently scored 14 Fed policymakers on 700 predictions they made on growth, jobs and inflation during the tumultuous period from 2009 to 2012. According to the report, the "most accurate forecasts overall came from Ms. Yellen." Furthermore, Fed minutes have revealed that Yellen was one of the only top Fed policy makers who warned about the housing bubble before the crisis. Despite significant policy differences with Yellen, former F.D.I.C. head Sheila Bair summed up the pro-Yellen case best, writing that "Yellen is clearly the most qualified successor to follow Ben Bernanke. There is no reason to pass her over for less-qualified males." I agree.
The case for Larry Summers: He has a penis.

In other words I fear the worst, but if the prize idiot we know as Obama does indeed pick Summers (or more accurately "is instructed to pick Summers by the people who run the country"), you'll be glad you were owning gold bullion at the time.


The Casey scamsters are going to pump PRD Energy (PRD.v)

Just so you know. Here's the five year chart...

...and if you're mad enough to pay for dumbass pump and dump information, go give your money to Marin Katusa now. He'll say thank you and never give it back. Seriously, those scumbags must be desperate for cash to resort to bullshit pumpjobs like this. However, it does fit in with the bankruptcy rumours swirling around Casey Research.

PS: By the way, how this works is that the assholes running the pump make it clear to anyone who can use Google what they're about to pump then assholes like me help them "create a buzz" before the real pumpo gets going. It's a no-win for anyone outside scumbag central, because they're going to clean up when they sell all the stock they've recently bought to the naive cannonfodder who'll come in at a higher price. But at least it might stop you paying for the intel and keeping a few of the shekels out the reach of chief scamster  Doug and the manifold pockets of the Casey Research pumphouse. 

Peru's Central Bank moves from attack to defence of its currency: Here's why

The news today that Peru's Central Bank, the BCRP, sold three hundred and fifty million dollars into the local forex markets in order to stop the national currency, the Peru Nuevo Sol (PEN), from depreciating any further was interesting, because it's the single biggest selling intervention that Julio Velarde & Co have ever made. The above is the two year chart for the Sol (PEN) against the greenback and here below is a chart that records all CenBank interventions since January 1st 2012 (could have gone back further but the chart gets messy to read, if you want more raw data on this go here):

In short, we've moved from years when the BCRP would buy dollars and suck them out of the market in Peru in order to stop the PEN from getting stronger (and ruining things like exports in those Nuevos Soles) to the recent scenario when the BCRP wants the Sol to maintain at its 2.80 to the dollar, not drop any further and not cause monetary inflation to begin hitting imports (because these days, Peru has grown rather partial to those cool developed world gadgets and things). That's the problem when you start running trade deficits, you see. And that's what Peru has hit its head on this year, what with its trade balance suddenly hitting red bars regularly (betcha a tenspot that July and August come in negative, too):

And that's because copper and gold, the monocultural exports of Peru, have been whacked for price at market. Which is why mining matters to Peru. A lot.

A Flash update...

...has just been sent to subscribers, on this fine Tuesday morning pre-open. It's got a bunch of words in it.

Chart of the day is...

...The Clive versus The Giant (aka vs GLD), last ten days:

Hmmm...better off buying gold bullion to avoid unexpected dilutions, y'say? And this morning BTO stuck a $3.93 conversion price on the offering, which looks low. 'Overhang' will be a word used today in connection with BTO over the place, IKN confidently predicts.

By the way, Competition entries going well, keep 'em coming. And UPDATE!, Iwnattos does a big long post on his pick for the sweep, right here.


IKN proudly presents, The "What's The Clive Gonna Buy?" Sweepstakes

Further to this post on B2Gold ( (BTG) earlier this morning, your humble scribe has already received several "What's BTO going to buy?" or "I think BTO might buy XYZ or ABC" mails from members of its esteemed readership (that's you, by the way). So the idea arrives of Hey! Let's throw a party! Invite everybody! Here's the deal:

1) Mail in to otto (dot) rock1 (AT) gmail (dot) com with your one single selection. Entitle your mail "The Clive Competition" so I know what to open where.

2) IKN notes down your entry.

3) Come the day that The Clive annnounces BTO's next M&A deal we check the entries announce the winner and....

4) THE WINNER WINS AN OUNCE OF SILVER, courtesy of your humble scribe (yup, I can run to $25 or so on this).

So don't delay, write in today. I'll give you til the end of this week to get your picks in. Goody lucky!

PS: Yes, we'll stick the guesses in a post once the entry window has closed. And we'll keep all names off the public record (initials should be ok)

PPS: And don't worry, The Clive is barred from entering this one. I had to tell him a couple of times before he backed off, though.

Just how powerful was last week's rebound in gold?

Let me tell you. It was so strong, so powerful, so bullish that even Gran Colombia Gold ( made an upmove:

If you see Serafino on your travels, don't forget to congratulate him.

B2Gold ( (BTG) thinks it can make profit with your money

Step 2: The BTO pops Thursday/Friday

Step 3: BTO goes to market to raise $225m today Monday.

Sheer coincidence, that TV appearance...y'know. Honest.

Anyway, BTO has enough cash for all its projects right now so this means it wants to raise cash to buy something (it also suggests that BTO isn't about to sell its 49% of Gramalote to Anglo). As we know The Clive and his merry band do their homework carefully before making a purchase move, you can bet that the target is already clear. It also means that quality small gold producers or late stage development projects are seen at a discount by the smarter end of the market, so screw Clive and buy the things he's looking to buy.

UPDATE: Fame! Or as Oscar Wilde put it, "There is only one thing in life worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about". But he would say that, wouldn't he?

Gernot Wober of Braeval ( to be released in the next few days

Colombia Reports has the story here.


The IKN Weekly, out now

IKN224 has just been sent to subscribers. It has 16,347 words. And pretty charts, too.

Peru Presidential Approval: Ollanta's downhill run continues

Peru's benchmark pollster IPSOS is out with its monthly snapshot approval poll and here we go:

Yup, that say's 29% approval. Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! His wife got 36%, also crappy. The two basic reasons for the drops are that 1) Peru's politicos are a mediocre bunch and 2) Peru's population is never, but never happy with its government. As for the reasons given this month, they'll think of something.