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Catching up with Gold Port Resources (GPO.v)

Remember Gold Port Resources (GPO.v), the no-hoper dog of a junior run by people with a clear-cut track record for running P&D scams and recently pumped by for-hire BS merchant Louis Lobito Little Wolf James of Casey Research just before (oh what a coincidence) the company runs a placement financing? With connections to Scientologist pumphouse ratbag Michael Baybak, too? Of course you do, so here are the latest insider filings from this nexus of junior mining wonderfulness:

Adrian Hobkirk, centre of the whole sordid pump job here, spends $100k to buy 20m shares at half a cent (and yes, before you ask this is the same company that ran its financing at 6c after Lobito's pump in January) and regular sidekick Allen Ambrose joining in with 4m at the same price.

What's cookin' guys?


The Friday OT: Paul Simon; Graceland

'The Mississippi delta was shining like a national guitar. Has any song started with a better line of lyrics?

This song, well in fact the album it came from, was part of my political awakening. For sure I'd heard about apartheid and I'd heard about Paul Simon as well, but both were unconnected in my naive teenage brain. Then this album came along as part of the backbeat tapestry to a wonderful, awakening summer and it was " musical instruments and voices make those sounds as well? it again will you?". So before other friends, or people that wanted to be friends, had pointed out the connection to South Africa's situation at the time and how I shouldn't support its existence for political reasons, I was hooked. Gumboots, Diamonds on the Souls of Her Shoes, the Al song and the vid with Chevy Chase, all of them, dozens of times, a feedback loop on a stereo in a VW Beetle and sand and sea and...well, everything that happens when you're single and stupid. It was way too late to make me feel guilty about loving this music. I love this album still and feel indebted to it on many levels but most of all this song, which pulls together Simon's penchant for psychoanalysis via songs, innovative music and peerless musicianship. He hits all the stops on this track.

The junior mining newsletter scam trade, revisited

You humble scribe was strongly reminded of this chart, first featured in this post dated July 11th, after suffering through the ridiculous prose spewed by Lobito in the latest edition of Casey International Speculator yesterday:

However, it must be clearly stated that it isn't just the stupidity of Louis James that's a waste of your time and money: All subscription newsletters on mining companies are a waste of your time and money, not just his. Stop pretending you can trust a bunch of self-serving moneygrabbing scammers that don't give a rat's ass about you and stop subscribing to them all. Every last one of them. 

Kaminak (KAM.v) spreading the love. Thinly.

Those wonderful moments when your humble scribe has no need to think, because his kind correspondents do all the work for him. Reader M threw over a mail this morning which highlighted an aspect of the Kaminak (KAM.v) bought deal announcement of yesterday. Here's the excerpt from the NR (your author's bold type):
Kaminak Gold Corporation (TSX VENTURE:KAM) (the "Company") is pleased to announce that it has appointed Raymond James Ltd. to lead a syndicate of underwriters, which includes RBC Dominion Securities Inc., Beacon Securities Limited, Canaccord Genuity Corp., Cormark Securities Inc. and Mackie Research Capital Corporation, to sell by way of private placement on a "bought" deal basis, $2.5 million of flow-through shares at an issue price of $0.95 per flow-through share (the "Offering"). continues here

This isn't about KAM and its Coffee project*, this is about the bones of the deal. Count 'em up people, that's six (6, seis, six sechs) Canadian brokerages splitting a two-and-a-half million dollar bot deal between them. As M rightly noted, a true sign of the times. An industry on life-support, cubicles full of suits wondering what it feels like to work at Tim Hortons. As expressed just yesterday, this cannot last and things are going to have to change, the only question is when.

*I'm not fussed and basically agnostic on it, others whose opinion I respect like it, others still who are pumphouse idiots with no freakin' clue also like it, debates on the validity of the project can happen at a later date, have a nice day

Eric likes Eric

Interesting NR out of Sprott Resource Corp ( moments ago. Here's how it starts, but if you care about these things you should read it all for the gold bullion notes at the bottom:
TORONTOSept. 6, 2013 /CNW/ - (TSX:SCP) -  Sprott Resource Corp. ("SRC") is pleased to announce that it intends to commence a normal course issuer bid (the "Bid") to repurchase up to 8.5 million of its common shares (the "Shares"), representing approximately 9.54% of the public float of SRC and approximately 8.52% of the total number of issued and outstanding Shares.  As at August 30, 2013, there were 99,719,097 Shares of SRC outstanding.  Purchases will be made for cancellation through the facilities of the Toronto Stock Exchange (the "TSX") or other Canadian market places at the prevailing market price of the Shares.
continues here

Jobs (and dollar) report: A non-event made into an event by yesterday's casino bets

This is the chart at the centre of it all:

In short, the last 24 hours have seen a market betting on a stronger-than-expected, so when it came in roughly-as-expected the big reset button is pressed. Aside from the previous report revisions (downwards, and slightly ugly) there's really not that much in this report. Gold back to the $1,390/oz region too, which makes sense.

Move along now...

PS: Today yet again underscores and reminds your author just how much smarter and better Calculated Risk is compared to the rest of the chattersphere. 

Chart of the day is... (GLD) versus silver (SLV) versus PMs (GDX) versus juniors (GDXJ) ETFs, last ten days:

Like I said, caution rewarded.


Thursday music break: Les VRP; Tabernacle

Real music:

If you speak French and have never heard this song, pay close attention to the words as if you're not laughing by the end you probably need to get out more. Also recommended, Le roi de la route here.

The opening rant of IKN226

The last two editions of The IKN Weekly (IKN225 and IKN226) have been along the lines of "ok, fair rebound in gold, but don't buy into the rah-rah too da moon Alice BS" and as such the touchstone has been caution, with some minor profit-taking on the way. 

Here's how it was set out in the opening rant of this week's edition (with tickers redacted):


Caution rewarded
By way of reminder, here’s how IKN225 ended last week:

The bottom line to the three trades I’m making next week is one word, caution. I’ve read plenty of market literature over the week, from those I respect greatly to others I take with a pinch of salt to others for whom i have zero regard. The overwhelming message from nearly everywhere is that “we’re going higher”, which is something that gets your author’s contrarian teeth (which are directly connected to his contrarian body and contrarian mind) grating all by themselves. As all near-term predictions on gold, the metals and the miners boil down to what the dollar is going to do right now, and I fail to see why the dollar should collapse into oblivion on command in the next 48 or 72 hours, I’m again obliged to return to my clearest observation that there are plenty of overbought stocks out there which need further rises in gold&co just to maintain their new, higher valuations. The result is that at least on the trading, near-term end of my portfolio exposure I’m going to take some more long money off the table.

This turned out to be the correct call, for last week at least (as always, everything depends on the preferred timescale). The decision to cash in two near-term trades and add some width to the XXX short came at an opportune moment and all three choices look good in hindsight. It makes a pleasant change to have called the scene right and to have acted upon the call, too.

Not that it’s a very good thing, though. The junior sector didn’t need to wait until gold started dropping in order to go South; blame flavour-of-the-month Syria if you like, though why junior exploreco XYZ Dot Vee that works in LatAm and trades for pennies should be affected by yes/no decision to fire some missiles in the MidEast or a parliamentary debate in London is a question that deserves more thought than junior traders and retail holders tend to give it (evidence that Dirk Gently and his ‘fundamental interconnectedness of all things’ is on the right track, perhaps) but once it was clear gold didn’t have much upside voom left to offer our focus segment of the financial world acted in the way I expected it to. Yes, XXX at $4.93 on Tuesday was overbought. Yes, XXX at $9.43 (!!) on Tuesday was overbought. Yes,XXX at $19.59 on Tuesday was overbought. But before you start rolling your eyes and thinking about picked cherries, other things need to be said about those examples:

1)      They would have stayed overbought and may even have kept moving up if gold had obliged the bullish rah-rah brigade who’d been making all that collective noise the week before (who in the space of a single week have either gone very quiet or have been busy revisionists) and risen through $1,450/oz.

2)      Those three above are from my list of potential short plays, but it’s equally true that my preferred long plays also dropped hard, such as XXX (down 8.7% week-over-week) XXX (down 8.5% WoW) or XXXL (down 6.0% WoW), to name but three companies I like and consider undervalued opportunities. So dumbass me, too.

One conclusion to draw from this (and if we don’t learn from our mistakes we’re screwed, so I try hard to rescue something from my reticence to dump all trading positions rather than a couple of them) is that we’re not yet in a situation where bright and strong looking individual companies get to shine out from amongst the crowd of ok plays, mediocre plays and downright cruddy, scammy plays. We’re evidently still in an “all boats rise/fall with the tide” market that treats the whole of “the juniors” as if it were one big stock ticker and that, my esteemed and respected audience, is not good news. Last Thursday a mining sector pro mailed me, put before my eyes a rant written and published by John Kaiser on Wednesday and asked for an opinion. Kaiser’s thoughts were mostly about one specific company that I don’t follow that much (and have no intention of doing so either) but what grabbed my attention was the part at the end of his rant where he announced he’d been invited to a debate on whether the current is merely a cyclical downturn or is one that brings the potential for catastrophic structural problems. In Kaiser’s words it “ a debate I'd love to lose, but the reality is that a small group of juniors will do very well going forward, while the rest suffer the death they deserve.

I’ve never really followed Kaiser much or dwelt on what he thinks are good stock picks, but he’s a commentator with a strong grasp the big picture for the junior world and that line sounded spot on to me. And that’s a problem. Here’s what I wrote back to my friend (who, by the way and before you ask, isn’t John Kaiser):

“We agree that the crud has to sink, shrivel and die. The rally we've seen this last ~3 weeks has had at least some of the crud rising with the cream.  Therefore, if the sector isn't ready to separate itself, it has to drop as a whole. At least in the near-term. We need to see some "de-coupling" (for want of a better word) of the good stuff and the shit stuff. I'd float the idea that in order to see this happen, we need first to see producing FCF+ names rise while the rest of the junior world treads water.”

The problem as seen is that most commentators on the junior exploreco scene recognize that the sector has become flabby, with too many companies holding too much moose/llama/yak pasture that doesn’t have a ghostly chance of ever becoming anything close to a working, profitable mine. There are hundreds of companies that need to disappear from the TSXV (and main board for that matter) before the junior sector can be deemed healthier and more worthy of serious consideration as a whole. This harks back once again to my preferred scenario chart, last seen in IKN221 and reproduced here, that’s looking for the best to separate from the rest and move up and higher first, but the worst of the bunch has to wither and die as well.

What we saw in the relief rally in August wasn’t that; by and large what we saw was the whole market, zeroes and heroes, cream and crud, stars and scams, moving as one. The de-coupling of good and bad has yet to be seen on a macro level, as although we have had certain bad stocks hit the legal and financial skids, there are enough stories out there of the bad ones that have performed every bit as well as the good ones. Equally last week, we had the sector as  whole taking a drop, not just the crummy stocks with either no production or no chance of making positive free cash flow at current prices in the case of producers trying to hang in there and get lucky on a bounce in gold. Sorry folks, this state of affairs cannot continue because it means the cleansing of the junior sector has hardly begun yet, we need a whole lot more of the no-hope end of the market to pack up and go home, so if the better ones can’t de-couple from the worse, it suggests the whole sector needs to drop until the weight of the no-hopers is diminished.

The bottom line is that unless something unexpectedly good happens to gold (well, unexpected by any normal or rational person who doesn’t live in the cloud cuckoo land of the hardcore goldbugs) the junior sector isn’t out of the woods yet, not by a long way. Alongside those companies I consider as undervalued there’s a long list of others that are still getting unrealistically high valuations from this market and until they go away, once and for all, things won’t get better for the good guys.

On a practical level, here’s how I intend to manage today’s chapter of the unfolding scenario:

1)     Hold the investment positions without worry.

2)     Not add any further investment-timelength positions (e.g. I’m still toying with XXX and now that I have a relatively OK handle on the financials I feel in a position to make an informed decision, but a buy isn’t in the cards for the moment)

3)     Hold the shorts in the portfolio with the potential to add another (see the IKN224 list for clues)

4)     Look to sell the other trading positions at a suitable opportunity

5)     Keep the boosted cash position in the portfolio the way it is. The half-sale of XXX padded the most, the other recent trade closes have helped, the XXX addition took some away but here today it’s still a good and comfortable padding to the port. It’s likely to stay that way (barring minor stuff) for the moment

My thoughts once again return to Gary Tanashian’s line of weeks ago in his NFTRH239 edition (he sent out #254 today, which I’ll read later) , reproduced here on a couple of occasions:

“This is not a time to be guessing. It is a time to be right by not being wrong.”

We’re back there again, people. Gold has come off its lows and doesn’t look likely to crash again. It may even go higher, but for the time being I’m holding off from any endorsements of the $3,500/oz and $10,000/oz numbers that have started to show up on the fringes and in the freakshow blogs (or Ron Paul’s ‘infinity per ounce’, but that’s for more obvious reasons such as the way there’d be no electricity to power my computer or let you read anything that couldn’t be sent via the non-working world internet system). I see no reason why it should go lower or higher and, as if by casual luck, it seems to have picked a level at-or-around $1,400/oz that is suited to separating the Rio Altos from the Samexes (1) wheat from the chaff, the ones that will survive from the ones that will not. Today is a time to hold the quality stocks that will do OK (not necessarily well, but OK) at the current gold price, not to bet on the middling or plain bad stocks that need gold etc to go higher before they reach financial security.

Maybe that there diplomatic Nobel Peace Prize winner Obama will consider threatening to bomb Brazil too

News out this morning is that President Dilma Rousseff is in the process of cancelling her planned State visit to The USA in protest against the tiny detail of having been spied upon and having her communications intercepted by the NSA (we did this story over the weekend). And this one might only be heating up too, as Glenn Greenwald earlier tweeted (and later deleted, tut tut Glenn) that there are even heavier revelations about NSA spying in Brazil about to hit this weekend coming.

The United States Dollar, made in Peru

A great story out of AP this morning about the counterfeit dollar business in Peru, now considered the world's leading fake dollar manufacturer. Here's a sample from the text to get you in the mood:
"Only $100 bills get shipped by counterfeiters to the United States, while $10s and $20s are sent to Peru's neighbors, Portocarrero said. Demand is particularly great in Argentina and Venezuela because currency controls make the dollar so coveted and they mostly circulate on the black market."
Read the whole thing here

Chart of the day is...

...the gold/copper ratio, 12 months:


The man who ranges in No Man's Land
Is dogged by the shadows on either hand
When the star-shell's flare, as it bursts o'erhead,
Scares the gray rats that feed on the dead,
And the bursting bomb or the bayonet snatch
May answer the click of your safety cacth,
For the lone patrol, with his life in his hand,
Is hunting for blood in No Man's Land.

No Man's Land


The South America World Cup Qualifiers: Round 15

The South American qualifiers are back, with the next round of matches on Friday (round 16 early next week) and we're getting to the business end of matters, too. Just four more rounds to go until the whole shebang is decided, so there's mucho mucho to play for from this moment onwards. You can check out the standings at the official FIFA page here, but in a nutshell Argentina (26pts), Colombia (23pts), Ecuador (21pts) and Chile (21pts) are all looking either very good or likely (in the case of Ecuador, probably the most vulnerable of the top four from here due to the schedule) for the top four automatic places. The big fight is for 5th place, because that offers a trip to Brazil as well thanks to a playoff with the 5th placed Asia group team. And right now, the fight for that spot is tighter than a duck's sphincter between Uruguay (16pts), Venezuela (16pts) and Peru (14pts).

So onto the matches this Friday and as we still have $70.55 hanging on from our original $100 virtual bankroll after round 14's failed bets, first the odds as supplied by Ladbrokes Dot Com and then the discussion and wagers:

Colombia 9/20       Draw 14/5         Ecuador 6/1
Paraguay 2/5         Draw 13/4        Bolivia 13/2
Chile 4/11             Draw 31/10      Venezuela 7/1
Peru 7/5                Draw 21/10         Uruguay 7/4

Of the four, the easiest to avoid playing (and watching for that matter) is Paraguay versus Bolivia. Paraguay, even the mediocre version they've offered up in the cycle, should beat the woefully bad Bolivia national team at home, but it's no gimme either so the cramped 2/5 odds for the Paraguay win offer no value.

Probably the easiest to call is Chile, who will be firing on all cylinders at home to Venezuela and looking for the three points that will virtually guarantee their ticket to Brazil next year. This isn't the best Chile side seen, but it's not bad either and when playing at home enjoy a formidable advantage. Meanwhile, Venezuela will be more than happy to squeeze a point out of this one and are probably already thinking about their home match next week against Peru.

The other two matches offer up the best betting opportunities. We know Colombia is a good team, but Ecuador isn't shabby either and although I doubt they can go to Baranquilla (North coastal Colombia) and win, they have a really decent shot at pulling out the draw and at odds of 14/5, there's a value bet on offer.

Finally, the hottest match of the lot is likely to be the last one played, Peru vs Uruguay in Lima. Looking at the table positions and the matches both teams have left, this is nothing short of a must-win for both of them. Uruguay is a traditional class act in South America but had a poor first period in the qualifiers and is now scrapping for qualification. It looks as though they're coming back to form and with a world-class front line in Cavani, Suarez and Forlan, if they click on Friday they can score at will. Meanwhile, Peru has the big advantage of playing at home and has its form players to rely on, particularly Jefferson Farfan who's playing great stuff these days for Schalke in Germany and Paolo Guerrero who's knocking them in at will for Timao in Brazil. One stat around this match is that 13 of Peru's 14 points in the qualifiers so far have come from home games, an average of over 2 points per game. Whatever happens in this match it promises to be full-on, passionate and the one result that you shouldn't expect is a draw, so if you watch just one game this Friday make it this one.

So to the bets, and I'm going to risk minor money on two games (saving cash for next week's, just in case):
  • $20 win Peru at 7/5, total theoretical return on bet $48. I think home advantage will be enough to swing this one. But money or not, it promises to be a great match (far more important)
  • $8 draw Colombia/Ecuador at 14/5, total theoretical return on bet $30.40. This is taken as a value bet that covers the total stakes on the round if Peru fails to win. Colombia are favourites for the game, but the odds of the draw are too good to ignore.

And let's see how we get on.

UPDATE Saturday AM: Aaaaaaand I suck at this. Uruguay beat Peru 2-1 (but yes, it was an intense and very watchable game) while Colombia sneaked a 1-0 win at home (Ecuador missed a penalty). So no soup for me on this week's bets and now just $42.55 left in the piggy bank for next week's bets.

A photograph of two people

One of these people has enjoyed years of success and popularity in Argentina

The other is President of the country. The occasion was this.

Vote unpeace

These days we're not allowed to call the act of dropping bombs on another country war. Then those long-winded descriptions that include words like deployment, targeted, limited and so on, they're never going to catch on, are they? Far too unwieldy. So what we need is a new terminology, something snappy and 21st century that fits neatly into news headlines. 

Therefore, unpeace.

Orwell would be proud of us all.

UPDATE: All is not lost, there are still patches of life out there. Reader 'W" writes:
Greetings Otto,
Concerning Orwellian phraseology or neologisms and your coining "unpeace." I can't not (sic) chime in:
From my mythical "Orwell Says Dictionary," proudly published by Rat in a Open Sided Cage Stuck to Your Face:
Pluspeace: n The legitimate actions of Your State to achieve friendship.
Doublepluspeace The outcome of pluspeace.

Ubinas lets off steam (literally)

Three bullet points to set the scene:

  • Ubinas is a particularly active volcano in the Moquegua region of South Peru, with a recent history of eruptions that have seen locals having to pack up and evacuate on more than one occasion in recent years.
  • This year, winter has been wetter than usual in the South and there's been plenty of snow. 
  • Now that the Andean winter is drawing to a close and the snows are beginning to melt, more than the usual amount of water is seeping into Ubinas and collecting near the active lava chamber.

The result:

This very cool recording is up-close-and-very-personal of a small explosion at Ubinas yesterday, not a full scale eruption and one of six in the last few days. Though you have to wonder about the mental health of geologists sometimes. "Hey, idea, let's trek up there and take a look at the crater, see what's going on!" "Hey, cool man! I'll get my coat."

Fun with math, rare earth feasibility studies edition

A little thought experiment for those of you who care about junior mining project feasibility studies (or in other words, boring stuff for most of you, time for the ESPN front page again).
  • Let's suppose you're offered up a feas study (FS) for a copper project. A fairly typical parameter thingy of $350m capex for a 15 year mine life and a base-case IRR of 16.8% post-tax. You certainly wouldn't dismiss it out of hand on those numbers.
  • Now, let's suppose that about half the revenues in the plan come from copper, with the other half from credit metals. Not a problem.
  • Now, let's suppose you keep reading down the FS and then you see that the base case price that the project uses for copper average sales price over life of mine is 48.5% higher than the current spot price*. Or in rough terms, the FS uses a ~$6.00/lb copper price for its calculations. Would that kinda maybe start to eensy weensy put you off the idea of this mine project, perhaps and perchance? Yeah, me too.
Now for sure, these things are never apples-to-apples, like I say it's just a thought experiment. Here's a link to the Matamec (MAT.v) heavy rare earth project FS announcement, out this morning. Makes for interesting reading. Oh, by the way, in some sheer coincidence it's a stock pumped by Louis Lobito Little Wolf James of Casey Research. And it popped yesterday on strong volumes, the day before this FS hit the market. Which is, as stated, obviously a coincidence and nothing else but that.

UPDATE: All the above came pre-bell, so let's see how Matamec (MAT.v) opened on the news this morning:

Oh, that well? Hoodathunkit. Certainly looking forward to reading Lobito's take on the Feas.

* Here's a clue to get you started on this: In its 1q13 financials, dated end June 30th, Dacha Strategic Metals (DSM.v) audited the current market value of its Dysprosium at $480/kg

Chart of the day is...

...Uranium Participation corp ( as a decent proxy to the metal:

Incredible though it may seem, the same people who told us that Uranium would suffer a temporary blip and spike right back up just after Fukushima are still telling us to get on. It's also interesting to note that the people pumping U junior plays to the masses tend to be the good ol' boy live free or die Libertarian* brigade that reject all that there commie policy nonsense and don't trust the government when it comes to things such as....ooooh, I dunno....the gold count in Fort Knox, for example.

Oh, the pro-Uranium junior brigade also told us that the Fukushima situation was all done with and under control, because that's what government officials told them. Fortunately, our governments never bullshit us and the public is bound to be in favour of a new wave of nuclear power plants programs, coming soon. Here's Reuters this morning:
(Reuters) - Radiation readings around tanks holding contaminated water at the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant have spiked by more than a fifth to their highest levels, Japan's nuclear regulator said, heightening concerns about the clean-up of the worst atomic disaster in almost three decades.

Readings just above the ground near a set of tanks at the plant showed radiation as high as 2,200 millisieverts (mSv), the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) said on Wednesday. The previous high in areas holding the tanks was the 1,800 mSv recorded on Saturday.
Both levels would be enough to kill an unprotected person within hours. The NRA has said the recently discovered hotspots are highly concentrated and easily shielded.

*My stars, what a stupid made up word that is, have you ever thought about it for more than a second?


The depletion of Yanacocha

In chart form:

July 2013's number (96,012 oz Au) was published today.

UPDATE: I'm asked for some annual numbers. No probs, here's back to 2002:

All from the same MEM source

The IKN Weekly, issue 226

IKN226 has just been sent to subscribers. Putting the world to rights since May 2009, so it is.


The IKN Weekly will go out Monday Labor Day...

...and not its usual Sunday. As US and Canadian markets are closed tomorrow, I'm going to take advantage of the quiet and give myself an extra day this weekend. Message ends.

Dilma Rousseff and Enrique Peña Nieto, Presidents of Brazil and Mexico and targets of NSA spying

The latest chapter in the Snowden papers is unfolding in Latin America. Brazilian investigative reporting TV show 'Fantastico', in conjunction with Glenn Greenwald, tonight revealed that Dilam Rousseff, President of Brazil, and Enrique Peña Nieto, President of Mexico, have been successfully targeted by the USA spy agency NSA who have picked up private communications from both people. 

In the case of Rousseff the details are not yet forthcoming on the information picked up. In the case of Peña Nieto, the example shown on Brazil  TV tonight was how texts from Peña Nieto in which he named his future ministers just after winning last year's election and long before they were announced were intercepted by the NSA.

Hilarity ensued

Judge Jury and Executioner

The problem is credibility. If there hadn't been so many lies and made-up bullshit about WMDs a decade ago, the rational world would have already given its backing. The name and flavour of the elected head isn't an issue either, because the foreign policy never changes and the bombs drop whichever side is in charge. 

And we're supposed to swallow whole, with no room allowed for critical thinking or debate on other potential scenarios, the line given to us by the same people who lied through their teeth in order to drop their bombs before. And then once the bombs have dropped, what changes? What will be resolved? Who gets to run the shop? Or is it that we just want the bombs, the flashes on TV, the briefings on how surgical it all will be, then is, then was, the means is in fact the end? If that Assadhole did indeed do what they accuse him of doing then I support his ouster and if it has to be violent by nature, so be it. But enough of the jingo-bullshit. Enough. Your idea of proof isn't our idea of proof, your track record means you don't get away with proving anything any longer by waving your preferred and selected piece of paper in front of our noses.

Another all-time record month for Peru copper production

And after a slow start to 2013, Peru's copper sector is going great guns, records now set in two consecutive months. The addition of the Antapaccay mine to Peru's produciton mix, as well as other mines running well, has seen the last two months set record production for the country's copper mining sector. Preliminary numbers out from Peru's INEI stats office today (we need to wait for the Mining Ministry to publish the official numbers, that will come in a week or two's time) put July 2013 copper production at 125,788 metric tonnes. The best month ever and relegating June 2013 to the second best month ever.

The fight for second place world producer (behind big daddy Chile) has been tight between The USA, Peru and China for a while. This year may be officially tight again, but from 2014 onwards there's only one name in it (think Antapaccay, Cerro Verde expansion, Toromocho start-up, Constancia, all those before things like Las Bambas comes online and no need at all to get messy in Cajamarca or anywhere else in Peru that doesn't want mining ops). Watch out Chile, Peru's gunning for you guys further down the line.