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6/21/18

Orion makes a move on Dalradian (DNA.to)

It's not just the $1.47 offer that's interesting here, it's who is buying that really catches the eye. Private Equity in the mining space.

6/20/18

Simple, two-step trading instructions on Minera IRL (MIRL.cse)

1) Don't pay more than 8.5c for shares, because Canaccord (House 33) is sitting on the ask and will sell you any amount that you care to buy at that price.

2) But perhaps consider picking  up a few in the next few days, because the dumbass at 33 trying to walk down the price and keep a lid on it is going to get the shock of his freakin' life soon. A pinkslip beckons, you zero DD monkey with zero Spanish or any idea of what's about to happen to your sorry ass.

That is all.

The excitement builds in HIVE Blockchain Technologies (HIVE.v)

With just a few days to wait before those highly anticipated annuals from the Giustra pump HIVE.v, the excitement is building in the market and eager buyers are grabbing all the stock they can get their ha....ah:


Well, maybe not. Can't wait to hear what Frank Holmes has to say at the Conference Call, he's always keen and willing to talk to the bizmedia. What? No ConfCall programmed? I'm shocked!

Michael Ballanger couldn't avoid his day in court forever

Due to travelling last week this humble corner of cyberspace is a bit late to the story, but that's hardly an issue as the worm Ballanger has been trying to wriggle out of the hearing for months on end so a few extra days ain't no biggie.

In a ruling handed down on June 13th, IIROC did little more than slap the wrists of this corrupt and corrupting market player but it's still interesting to see the details of the case. As expected, it was all about his dirty dealings in shares of Tinka Resources (TK.v) back in 2014 when he thought he was important and for more, see the ruling PDF right here.

Sadly IIROC is a weak entity and only fined the toerag $15,000 (if this sort of shenanigans happens on US SEC turf, Ballanger would have chance to get intimate with Bubba in the lock-up showers) and barred him for a nominal year from the industry, but there is good news as a silver lining, right at the end of the ruling:
"The Respondent is 65 years old and has indicated that he does not intend to return to the investment industry."
Which makes Canadian capital markets just that little bit cleaner going forward.

6/19/18

Being wrong about stocks, Arizona Mining (AZ.to) edition

It happens all the time, part of the playing field, name of the game. If you're like me and dumb enough to have an opinion on a wide range of stocks and traded vehicles, especially in the wild world of junior mining, you're going to get your rear end handed to you on a platter on a regular basis

The latest edition of this round these parts is Arizona Mining (AZ.to), a stock I laid into a while ago for a couple of reasons. They included a) Mn issues showing up in the conc, b) permitting issues and social risk, c) the way they planned to cram all their mine infrastructure on the small footprint of patented land they have instead of admitting they have a space problem. The thing is, South32 disagreed with me, bought into the stock and then early this week made a friendly $6.20 bid for the shares. That means the stock has doubled from the point I got mouthy about it and no matter what I think about its future potential or the sagacity of South32's decision to buy out the company, I got this one wrong. Period. 

Which means of course that when a mouthy git like me puts in a bad call, the mails start flowing and yup, I've had a few on this one. I particularly liked the one from Garrett Goggin, who decided to drunk-mail me and call me a jackass. Yes folks, the very same Garrett Goggin that has had his holy ass handed back to him all year on his failed crypto calls, but that's beside the point. I think. Also the ones that demand I apologize to the world are great because....are you guys freakin' joking? Did I tell you to short the thing? No. Did I short it? No. Did I lose any money? Not a bean. Did you take the word of a mouthy blogger as Bible? Are you responsible for your own trades? Etc. This blog isn't The IKN Weekly, where I get the serious work done and call my trades for all to see, if I screw up there (and it happens) subbers get a full autopsy on what went wrong. My bad call on AZ.to isn't some sort of anomaly either, I've been wrong so many times I lose count but recent ones like Red Eagle, Lithium X, Starcore and Focus Ventures come straight off the top of my head without even checking any lists. AZ.to is another wrong call, I'll live with it because I know for a fact I get way more right than I do wrong (you don't get to write a report that a whole bunch of people pay good money to read for coming on for a decade without a decent strike rate, you go out of business). This is junior mining folks, if your strike rate is better than mine, I doff my cap. If it's 100% you're a liar.

However, there is one thing I need to say (and it's really why this post exists), that's to heartily and sincerely congratulate Richard Warke for his success at AZ. Not only was he right, but in the midst of my criticizing period against his company he took time to make contact, put his point of view and arguments across and all while being very civil and gentlemanly. Full applause for you, sir, spend your winnings well. The rest of you, keep tuning into IKN for more screw-ups and bad stocks calls, this won't be the last one.

What Marin Katusa isn't telling you about Lucara Diamond Corp (LUC.to)

As the pump on Lucara Diamond Corp (LUC.to), headed up by the single worst BS artist in Vancouver, gathers speed it's time to peel back the curtain and explain just why LUC is so keen on getting you to love this whole "Disrupt Diamonds Blockchain Wonderlove thing" (that will never work, as previously explained). Because the real reason these Canadian mining types want the stock price higher right now and are so desperate that they'll call up Katusa and his cohorts of Crap to do so isn't anything to do with a brave new crypto world. It's all about their Karowe mine.

Karowe is the main asset at LUC (and will remain that way, blockchain revolution or not), but the problem is that it now needs a SLOM* in order to remain in production. We're now at the point at which LUC needs to sink a VERY deep shaft in order to continue mining profitably and we're talking many many millions of dollars to do that.

Why so? IKN explains. Those of you who have visited Karowe will know that the open pit mine life has always been relatively short, even though the original pit was cut into basalt and had pitwall angles of around 60°. You'd normally think that under the circumstances of such competent host rock, they'd be able to avoid the mega-expense of a shaft and simply push back on the pit in order to extend open pit mine life. Sadly, that's not the case because as the open pit model matures the country rock has become sandstone, cannot support such a sharp angle and was flared out to around 40°. But then it gets even worse, because in the last couple of years of the open pit mine plan the pitwall moves into mudstone and the stability angle drops to a prohibitive 20°. That means it gets way too expense to cut back and the only way forward is to go underground, sink that shaft and go block caving. But even then, there's a serious geological issue at Karowe because normal block caving requires a competent host rock around your kimberlite pipe. LUC doesn't have that, it has sloppy mudstone all the way down so even after they raise a SLOM* from you retail monkeys currently buying into this pumpo, success is far from guaranteed.

But yeah...buy into this Clara thing...Marin told you it gonna be yuuuge so what could possibly go wrong?

Hey, I wonder if Katusa gets on the LUC President's List when that upcoming massive equity raise happens?

*Shit Load Of Money

6/18/18

The IKN Weekly, out now




IKN473 has just been sent to subscribers, one day later than normal but that was already flagged. The main event, a site visit report.

The Marin Katusa Lucara Diamond (LUC.to) pumpjob

If you haven't worked out by now that the latest BS pumpjob from that serial destroyer of retail value, Marin "Never Reco'd A Bad Stock" Katusa" is Lucara Diamonds (LUC.to), you're not paying attention. Below find a segment from IKN472, dated July 10th 2018 (i.e. eight days ago). Since these words LUC is already up 12%, so readers of this who decided to get in front of the dumb money that has started to move in already are doing nicely. Why Eira Thomas has dirtied herself by getting involved with Vancouver's worst two-faced front-running slimeball is anyone's guess, but mine is that LUC must be pretty desperate on this Hail Mary.

Anyway, read what subscribers to The IKN Weekly read eight days ago.

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Lucara Diamonds (LUC.to) to be pumped this Wednesday

Today Sunday morning, reader “E” sent over a promo mail he received from the John Mauldin company “Mauldin Economics” that previews a register-to-watch interview between John Mauldin and Marin Katusa (a name known by to readers here, I am sure).



After the normal type of “Wow look success success!!! you want to be a success too, right?” opening we get to the reason for the mail, it’s a pump job for a mystery stock. Here’s the relevant part of the script:



I’ve been asking Marin to sit for an interview for Mauldin Economics readers for months… and I finally have him pinned down.

He’s agreed to share with you a description of his investment process and his unique approach to research, which has been critical to his success.

And he’ll discuss what he believes is the most promising investment opportunity he has ever seen. It’s a mining company unlike any you’ve ever heard of…

This is not a pie-in-the-sky speculation, by the way. This miner has one of the highest profit margins of any mine in the world. And their revolutionary use of modern technology is about to change the sector—forever.

If you are interested in the resource sector, you’ll want to listen in on my conversation with Marin You can register to see the interview here.

I’ll release the video of our discussion on Wednesday morning at 10 am ET. It will be available for you to watch for 48 hours—until Friday at 10 am ET—after which, I’ll have to pull it down.

I wish I could give you more time, but Marin insists that his new opportunity is time sensitive. So please, take a moment to register for our discussion. You can sign up here. 



You’re given a link too, which is here (17) if you care enough. Anyway, to cut to the chase the stock Katusa is going to pump to a bunch of unsophisticated retail investors who would have just had a large portion of sequins thrown in their eyes by that time is Lucara Diamonds (LUC.to), so if you feel like getting in front of this pump job then be my guest. I won’t be doing so personally though, I’ll be on the road, pointing at rocks and getting bitten by very small flying insects. As this 12 month chart shows, 1) LUC has been in share price trouble for quite a while 2) there are vested interests trying hard to keep it above the C$2.00 line (margin calls would send it lower if that were broken, I hear) and 3) the last time Katusa pumped LUC.to is circled in red. Note the speed of the price spike and how it created a liquidity event for some or other holder to exit.




Which means that if you get in front of this pumpjob, I recommend that you’re nimble with your trade. As I’m on the road that’s going to be impossible for me. Thanks for the heads up, reader “E”.
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For more on this phantom "game changing" technology that is pure smoke and mirrors, see the IKN post dated March 27th. One of the most popular posts of the year on the blog so far that covered the original Katusa pump on this company. That pump failed and this one will, too.

Quiet on the blog today, as well

But not for secret reasons, after getting back from the trip in the wee small hours I need to write up the visit to Wesdome and get the Weekly out this evening. Enjoy your market day and the World Cup (I get to watch matches as from mañana), normal service will resume here as from tomorrow.

6/16/18

Glass half...

Thank you, reader "R":

6/15/18

A reminder to subscribers of The IKN Weekly

Due to travel commitments, this weekend's edition will be published on Monday evening, instead of the usual Sunday evening.

The Friday OT: Ólafur Arnalds and Nils Frahm; Trance Frendz

Want to listen to something beautiful? Want to watch something beautiful? Well of course you do, kind reader.




Thank me later. Youtube here.

6/14/18

The LIVE pump and the liar Ameduri

The proven liar Daniel Ameduri is ground centre of the LIVE pump. And here's the paydirt:



Ameduri is getting U$800,000, 800,000 options and 1.9m RSUs.

6/12/18

This blog will be fairly quiet for the next few days

For secret reasons.

Tahoe Resources (TAHO) (THO.to): Clayton "is resigned"

Let's face it, Ferrari Kev was never going to take the blame for the value destruction wrought on TAHO or the almighty mess he created, was he?

Clayton is replaced by Voorhees, the epitome of the two-dimensional company suit and another of Ferrari Kev's lapdogs.

So it goes.

6/11/18

Argentina's Peso, inflation, growth and the people who now own the country. Again.

And Macri is STILL the saviour and future of this country. Anyone who believes this shtick is either unversed in the language of Cervantes or utterly out of their minds.


The only way this ends ---> Badly for Argentines. Their owners, on the other hand, are making out like bandits. The perma-FUBAR country strikes again and it's like watching Groundhog Day, except that the star doesn't get to learn any deep wisdom or fall in love with Andie McDowell.

Tinka Resources (TK.v) mailbag

Several interesting feedback mails from readers this morning on the Tinka Resources (TK.v) note out yesterday in IKN472. Good stuff and thanks to all that took the time, and one of them in particular got me asking permission of the author to put up here on the humble corner of cyberspace. Fortunately reader 'MP' agreed, so here we go:

Thanks for the thorough review of TK. I have been scratching my head on that one ever since the financing closed and it took another leg down. As a point of interest, I've watched broker 11 (Macquarie Capital) sell boatloads of stock steadily over the last 2 months. It seemed a odd broker to have an order of that size especially considering they weren't involved in the recent financing. Who knows the reason they got the order but as of today the have sold exactly 2.75 mill shs since April 18th via the various Cdn exchanges. Sometimes those nice clean share numbers indicate the order is filled. Maybe I'm watching the tape too closely but thought it was interesting. 

Yup MP you're right, that is interesting. Nice catch sir, thanks.

When Sibanye (SBGL) bought Stillwater

Just wondering how that decision to buy Stillwater for $18/share back in December 2016 and to move into PGMs is working out for you, Sibanye Gold diehards...



Really? That well?

This is the thing about balance sheets and why I whack on about them so much. You can ignore them and their effects for a while, you can bluster and bluff the market about cash flow projections and what-have-you and it'll work for a time, as well. But sooner or later your balance sheet catches up with you. SBGL knows, AKG knows, NGD knows. Who's next? PVG?

Novo Resources (NVO.v): A conversation (from IKN472)

A minor part of the Weekly IKN473, out last night.


We join this conversation half way through:

A: So do you agree that it’s going to be very difficult to reach a 43-101 or JORC compliant resource number for NVO?
B: Yes, we agree on that. But that doesn’t make the company worthless! They clearly have a lot of gold!
A: And I agree with you on that. But what I’m interested in is monetizing it, making the company profitable.
B: Me too.
A: Good! We’re on the same page. But what really matters is being able to justify the current market cap, because if you include those very-in-the-money warrants (and you have to, really) NVO is now revolving around a $1Bn market cap. That’s expensive.
B: Okaaaay…if you say so. I think NVO is cheap!
A: Fine. So in that case, I’m not even going to ask you to justify a future where NVO is double or triple today, all we are going for is to justify $1Bn.
B: They have a lot of gold!
A: And a lot of market cap valuation, too. Let’s justify its market price with that gold, yes?
B: Well, you do what Bob Moriarty says! You mine it!
A: I agree 100%. Now, how do you mine it?
B: Placer-style of course! Dig it up, process it, produce gold!
A: Okay, how much gold?
B: What do you mean?
A: How much gold will you be able to produce from any given part of the NVO tenements in, let’s say, one year.
B: Why one year?
A: Okay, ten years! Whatever time period you prefer, I simply suggest one year at this point because it’s a standard period used in the industry.
B: Well, let’s say a year then. And they mine the rock at a 10g/t average and 90% recovery.
A: To be honest, I think the nature of this deposit means you get higher recoveries than that. I’d prefer you used 95%.
B: Okay, so one tonne of rock produces 0.305 oz of gold.
A: Agreed.
B: And 2,000 tonnes per day is 611 oz gold.
A: Agreed.
B: That’s 55,000 per quarter! That’s a lot of gold!
A: Not bad, is it? 220,000 oz gold per year.
B: Lots of mines at that production rate are worth $1Bn!
A: Well that might be pushing the envelope a little, but I’ll concede the point.
B: Good!
A: But for how may years will it produce?
B: Sorry?
A: 220,000 ounces in a year, yes. For how many years?
B: Lots of years!
A: How many?
B: We don’t know yet.
A: Why not?
B: We haven’t finished exploring yet.
A: And when NVO does, will it have a resource?
B: No, probably not.
A: And what about that average grade? How do you know it will all be around 10g/t like the recent bulk samples?
B: We don’t know yet.
A: Why not?
B: We haven’t finished exploring yet.
A: And when NVO does, will it have an official average grade to tell us? One that it can safely use in economic modelling?
B: No, probably not.
A: And what about the capex to build the mine? How much will it need?
B: We don’t know yet.
A: Why not?
B: We haven’t finished exploring yet.
A: So what you are saying is that NVO has a lot of gold and should mine it. And under reasonable circumstances (e.g. 10g grade, 2,000 tonnes per day, 95% recovery) it can produce 220,000 oz per year. But we don’t know if that grade will hold up across the whole of the resource and we don’t know what size production facility it will need. Or how and when the mill is built, because we don’t have a resource we don’t know how many mineralized tonnes there are and the operator will be hoping for the whole life of mine that they find enough for the next year.
B: Well…maybe. But they can mine more! And produce more! What about a 4,000 tonne per day operation?
A: Okay that’s fine. So apart from the risk that it depletes twice as fast and runs out, are you also telling me that we don’t know what size mine it will need and therefore the capex cost is unknown?
B: Hmmm, probably not.
A: And that’s because we don’t know the grade or the tonnage, right?
B: Right.
A: And though certain people can make a reasonable guess on both, we won’t have any guarantees because the third-party peer review system in the world of mining, namely 43-101 or JORC, won’t be able to give us one. So when the company goes to the financiers to ask for money to build the mine, what will they be able to use to guarantee the bankers’ investment?
B: They have a lot of gold!
A: How much gold?
B: We don’t know yet. But Quinton says there’s a lot!
A: So a bunch of hard-nosed bankers who always want a guaranteed path to return of principle loan will simply believe the founder, president, driving force and promoter of the company? Who is also the chairman by the way and that avenue of unusual corporate oversight can be explored another day, but for the moment let’s give that a pass. Who is the same person who burned through a bunch of OPM at Evolving Gold by looking for a massive gold deposit that started well with excellent early discovery stages but eventually petered out and failed when the deposit couldn’t grow?
B: Are you suggesting Quinton is a crook?
A: No not at all, far from it. He’s as straight as an arrow and his integrity is not in doubt. All I am saying is that it might not be easy to raise the type of capex NVO will need to build a mine.
B: They can sell shares! Kirkland Lake will buy shares!
A: Okay, shall we assume 300m shares out then, rather than 220m?
B: Okay, for ballpark purposes.
A: And you think that company, with that mine, is worth around $1Bn today and once the placement is done $1.5Bn at its current share price? The same ballpark valuation as MAG Silver, Fortuna Silver, SSRI Mining, Pretium Resources, First Majestic etc etc.
B: Yes, because they have a lot of gold!
A: How much gold?
B: We don’t know yet! But if it can produce over 200k oz of gold a year for a few years, it’s bound to make money!
A: Oh I agree on that, don’t think for a minute that I don’t agree. But will it be able to command the type of price/earnings ratio that a mine with a compliant resource or reserve will be able to get? One that knows it has gold to mine and produce in 10 or 15 years?
B: Kirkland Lake can buy them out!
A: And KL takes on the type of unknown resource risk you’re implying? No reserve asset value? The potential the crater the whole company if the resource surprises the bulls by being smaller than once imagined? We know Eric Sprott likes taking risks, but that’s a whole different league of exposure.
B: But these ounces are going to be very profitable.
A: I agree. For what it’s worth, my ciggypack calculations say they could produce at an AISC of U$700/oz and that’s U$600/oz profit per ounce. Pay taxes and everything, I see U$80m per year net/net and that’s not to be sniffed at.
B: Good!
A: That’s enough to justify a $1Bn market cap…if you could give it the normal type of PE multiple. And if it were in production. And if it had raise the capex cash. But right now…?
B: Dude, you don’t get it! They have a lot of gold!
A: How much gold?

(etc)

6/10/18

The IKN Weekly, out now




IKN473 has just been sent to subscribers. All aboard!

6/8/18

The Friday OT: Jon Hopkins; Emerald Rush

Oh my lordy lord. To begin, it's difficult choosing just one track from the new Jon Hopkins album 'Singularity', you really need to hear the whole thing so do just that (and please, no skimping on the speaker system). But choose I have, it's this one (the edit version that comes with the official video). Be warned, its addictive power is off-scale.


Singularity is the album of the year, hands down. If you see me walking down the street with earbuds in and a gaping weird ecstatic vacant awe smile on my face it's because of this 62 minutes of musical bliss on perma-repeat. Youtube here.

Argentina : The Peso is running again

Less than 12 hours after Argentina announced its U$50Bn rescue package deal with the IMF, the Argentine Peso (ARS) breaks through the 25:1 barrier with the dollar set as a "None Shall Pass" ceiling its Central Bank.


The deal is a direct return to the 1990's, it's incredible to watch as both the IMF and this most FUBAR of all countries willing go down the same road to disaster again. However the forex market isn't as stupid as this match made in hell and you can guarantee they'll be praying for more Central Bank intervention that tries to stop the forex rot; it's akin to giving away free dollars.

Maria Smirnova makes the bull case for silver

Sprott's Smirnova is one of the bets metals and mining analysts out there, so when she publishes a thinkpiece on silver and lays out a bull case, you listen. It's right here so go read yourself, you don't need any of my prose to frame it further. 

6/7/18

The IKN Weekly on Sunday...

...will be about Tinka Resources.

HIVE Blockchain Technologies (HIVE.v)

Well I dunno 'bout you, dear and valued reader*, but I'm really looking forward to the end of this month and the moment when HIVE Blockchain Technologies (HIVE.v) files its annuals. Also, the market looks like it's waiting with keen anticipation and bated brea... Oh:



And as well as the whole "running to stand still" business model, we will of course be paying attention to that travel expenses number again. Because I haven't laughed as much about any financial line item since the last one came out. 

Hey, did you know Frank Giustra won't allow a flight path for his private jet that takes in a stopover in the USA? Not even a fuel stop without getting off the plane. Wonder why that is? Anyway, til the end of the month.


*Except those from CEO.ca of course, either liars or dumbasses who believe liars

A Novo Resources (NVO.v) request

As we had so much fun on Twitter today with this request, it's only fair that it gets an airing here as well. Here's how the Tweet went:
"Request for Novo Resources longs. Please provide either an explanation on how NVO gets to a 43-101/JORC compliant resource or if not, a reasonable path to production of enough size to justify current mkt cap. As without one of those, imo all long theses are pure hot air."
And unlike the thin-skinned CEO.ca pump artist "hhorseman" who thought this was all unfair and about him (more on that tomorrow), you should be clear that this isn't a loaded question. Yes, I'd agree that it's an uncomfortable question for longs because it brings into focus the obvious weak point of the whole NVO story, but it's in no way loaded. Experience has taught me that it's only the promo pump end of the junior world that shies away from the tough parts, companies and supporters of who tackle the weak points to the satisfaction of the world see their share prices and portfolio values really move up.

So quite seriously, I as a neutral on this stock (a well-documented position) would like an answer to this. How does NVO justify its virtual $1Bn market cap (those cheap warrants must be counted in)?
  • If it can put together a compliant resource, good because that may well do it. But how?
  • If it cannot put together a 43-101 or JORC compliant resource, then I can only presume it would need to go into production as stands. So what reasonable production scenario can value this at C$1Bn?
  • And if I'm wrong and there's some third way of placing a tangible valuation on NVO, then what is it? (because for the life of me I'm stumped).
FWIW and to try and help a little, some answers and comments on Twitter today show there are people in (or at least interested) this stock that don't really understand what company equity is.

PS: The "Because we think there are X million ounces" argument doesn't work, that's why third party resource counts under rules and regulations exist.

6/6/18

Carlos Oliva will be Peru's new FinMin UPDATED

So now you know. And 1% you readers will also care. Telling you anyway.

UPDATE: And it turns out that he won't. He was offered the post, initially accepted it on an unofficial level, then something went wrong with the negotiations and he backed out. "Too many conditions" say government sources.Also, the Vice Minister of Economy handed in his resignation today, so that's another candidate off the table. Still nobody for the post this evening.

UPDATE2 Thursday: And now he's accepted the position! It took some convincing apparently, but this afternoon he gets sworn into the job. 

Dear investors of INV Metals (INV.to)

Are you still long this stock? Did you see what just happened in Azuay? And if you're staking it all on the MacGibbon rep, have you seen the total mess they made at TMAC?

Seriously, run away people while there's still 50c on the table.

More on Nick Hodge of "Outsider Club"

According to reliable sources, he's BBFs with Marin Katusa. In other words, another cog in the scumbag wheel of Vancouver.

Frank Curzio gives them both regular airtime on his show, too. Birds of a feather.

UPDATE: Also this from IKN's Fiore source:
"Hodge is a another paid newsletter writer/promoter for Giustra and a few of the other Vancouverites Usually also does a flashy movie on his touts where he has received cheap shares and cash."
Seems nice.

Itinerant on Sinking Alpha is so cute

Blatantly rips off ideas and concepts presented by this humble scribe, links to this blog to back up his second-hand anal yses and...continues to call me "Rude Otto".

It's far ruder to be an intellectual parasite. Go fuck yourself, Itinerant.

6/5/18

Peru: Roadblocks at mines owned by Buenaventura (BVN), Hochschild (HOC.L) and Fortuna (FVI.to) (FSM)

Early reports are of roadblocks by locals in the Caylloma district of Arequipa region in South Peru. Locals are angry with mining companies working the zone and say they are fed up with the companies promising community a social programs, only to ignore the agreements later. According to these early reports, locals have set up roadblocks and while allowing private vehicles through, are now stopping any vehicle connected to the mining operations at Ares (HOC.L) and Bateas (FVI.to), as well as the commission stage Tambomayo (BVN).

More details later when available.


UPDATE: The main complaint seems to be that the dirt track road used by the mining companies has been kicking up enormous amounts of dust due to the quantity of trucks now using the road. Locals have complained for months about this and how the dust is a pollution risk as well as contaminating their nearby crops. The mining companies pledged to pave the road on several occasions but after each agreement, nothing happened. Therefore locals feel forced to take action by blocking the roads.

BVN, FVI and HOC: Winning friends and influencing people in Peru. Certainly a different story to those smiling rosy-cheek kids you always get on their websites.

So I get this question about Millrock Resources (MRO.v)...



And yes, after about 15 seconds on the internetwebpipes indeed turns out that this Nick Hodge is another mining stockpick wealth make-yer-rich guru who plies his knavery on the green and foolish of this world (I'd pay more attention to them all but I can't be arsed these days), he runs something called "The Outsider Club"* and yes, he's pumping Millrock Resources (MRO.v) to his merry band on knownothings and doing this to the stock:


It won't last. It never does. And guess who's selling to the new buyers?

Anyway to answer JR's question, in this case I'm not 100% sure whether MRO has paid people off recently to promo its cause, but I do know that it went with one of the established patterns of getting your name on the Newsletter Writer (NLW) cribsheets a couple of years ago. That's because when it ran its seed financing round, it didn't just offer the cheap shares with juicy warrants to friends/family/financiers and those people who would form a core of loyal shareholders from the start. Instead MRO went out into the wild woods of Vancouver and offered chunks of its flesh to a whole bunch of NLW, including Casey of course (natch) but also a whole range of others. And without knowing for sure, I'd bet yer man Hodge was on the list.

So cut to a couple of years later and for whatever reason, Hodge decides he needs a liquidity moment to dump either his own shares, or to allow one of the NLWs in cahoots with him to get hers or his out. That's when you suddenly get a breathless spiel for the stock, which pops hard on volume and a new set of bagholders are created. Therefore JR, I don't have the certain knowledge and cannot be bothered to find out either (the less time spent in the company of these nefarious merchants of sludge the better, I find) but I'd bet a dollar to a donut the above is significant part of the equation. All legal, but legality and morality are two very different subjects.

UPDATE: Oh man, this Nick Hodge guy is a real treat.

*Because ain't it cool that you're an outsider and there's a club specially for you...filled with outsiders...oh lordy shoot me now.

6/4/18

Peru FinMin David Tuesta resigns

A black eye for the new Martín Vizcarra administration, as we hear Peru's Minister of Finances, David Tuesta, has resigned. Tuesta was the architect of the recent tax rises in some goods (including fuel) that met with strong protests in the country, particularly in the provinces. Looks like President Vizcarra's honeymoon period is now over.

We're now waiting on official word of Tuesta's resignation, which shouldn't be long in coming. No word on who will replace him as yet.

UPDATE: Now confirmed.

On the Mexico and Colombia elections (from IKN471)

A bit of the 'Regional Politics' section of last night's edition of The IKN Weekly, IKN471:

Mexico: All roads now leading to AMLO
With less than a month to go before the big vote date, we’re now getting headlines in Mexico’s press like this one (translated):

“Victory For AMLO Seems Inevitable, According To Polls”

That from the Diario de Yucatán (8) but there are any number of op-eds and reports out there now saying the same thing in different ways. López Obrador’s support has remained strong though the final stages of the election campaign, by general consensus he’s performed well at the two live televised debates so far (there’s one to go in a few days’ time), and what’s more the support of his main rivals Anaya and Meade has stagnated (they continue to split the “anyone but AMLO” vote).

So get used to the idea of AMLO as the next President of Mexico, but don’t fear him as much as some of the near-inevitable English headlines will have you believe in days ahead. You’re sure to get certain media channels screaming about Left Wing disasters and suchlike but fret not, AMLO isn’t the hard left reactionary that he once was and part of his successful march to the presidency this time is because, unlike the previous two attempts, his message and policies are toned down and centre-left in style and substance. Mexico will remain a market economy and investor friendly, there will be decisions around the margin of that but nothing we as FDI people should worry about too much.

In fact I would contend that the outcome to the Colombia election is far more important in regional geopolitical terms than that of Mexico and as you are about to see, that’s pointing toward a happy ending as well.

Colombia: Iván Duque now red hot favourite to be next President
By way of confirmation of this publication’s initial reaction of hearing of the out-sized victory margin of Iván Duque in last weekend’s first round of elections in Colombia, the first set of reliable polls on the round two run-off between Duque and let wing Gustavo Petro look like this (9):

  • Duque: 55%
  • Petro: 35%
  • To spoil ballot/don’t know: 10%

That 20 point margin will be near-impossible to close for Petro and we can now be confident that Duque will win and the Álvaro Uribe dauphin will become the next President of Colombia.

I’ve been asked by a couple of you what this means for mining in Colombia and the best answer is “no worse than today”, which isn’t much improvement of course (the legislation and institutional support for hard rock mining continues to be sorely lacking), but even a continuation of the current “muddling along” situation is better than the overtly anti-mining stance that would have been adopted by a Petro government.



Parsing today's Pan American Silver (PAAS) NR on Dolores

Today's offering from Pan American Silver (PAAS) is on this link. Here we go, your humble scribe does the black ink:


VANCOUVER, June 4, 2018 /PRNewswire/ - Pan American Silver Corp. (NASDAQ: PAAS) (TSX: PAAS) (the "Company") today announces that the security situation on the access roads to the Dolores mine has improved following increased patrol and enforcement by the Mexican authorities. 

We know this. Police have been running heavily armed convoys through the zone.
As a result, road transport of diesel fuel, cement and other supplies to the mine has now resumed. 

Strange that they didn't previously tell us they'd stopped. But so far at least the La Linea narco gangs have not engaged the convoys and trucks have got through.
The Company will increase the use of its private, secured airstrip to transport people to and from the mine site until the situation normalizes.

A nice bit of legalese here. In fact the company has been running 20 light aircraft flights per day to get workers out of Dolores. I suppose that the pilot flying back in counts as "to the mine" as well, but the traffic in reality has been one-way. Hundreds of workers flown out, with the next batch due to leave in the second half of this month. that's when they plan to ship out heavy machinery, too.
Due to the suspension of personnel transport on the access roads and reduced staffing levels, in late May the Company curtailed certain activities, including underground and open pit mining and leach pad expansion. 
Production of silver and gold continues at normal rates due to the large reserve of high and low grade ore stockpiles, which are feeding the pulp agglomeration plant and partial operation of the crushing plant. The heap leaching and Merrill Crowe circuits continue to operate normally. At this time, the Company does not expect a material impact to its annual production guidance for 2018.
Again note the legalese here, "At this time". Heap leach operations are forgiving in nature over a short period, what PAAS needs to worry about is a prolonged supply chain starvation that begins to affect the medium-term production outlook. See above for more on that.
"We would like to express our gratitude to the Federal and Chihuahua State authorities in Mexico for their support and rapid deployment of resources to secure the access roads to our Dolores mine, and we will continue to work closely with them as we move forward," said Michael Steinmann, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company.
Because if the police only hang around for a couple of weeks, they're screwed. Not only that, but we know from experience that the narco gangs such as La Linea tend to make temporary retreats but will always return to claim their transport/shakedown corridors. Anyone who thinks that this issue, which has been months and years in the making, has suddenly and permanently disappeared needs to get out more.


6/3/18

The IKN Weekly, out now




IKN471 has just been sent to subscribers. A short idea. Cheers.

Angry Geologist does Excellon (EXN.to)

And points out a few home truths about the company's turnaround. Right here.

6/1/18

The Rio Blanco mine project in Ecuador has just been stopped...

...by a judicial ruling. The judge has decreed that locals had not been given the right of prior consultancy and therefore the project must be suspended immediately.

Rio Blanco, owned by China's Junefield, is in construction phase and due to go into production in 2019.

Daniel Ameduri is a proven liar

It is now June 2018 and "Future Money Trends", the website owned and run by Daniel "Davidoff Cigar" Ameduri, is still alive, up and on air.

We can therefore conclude that he is a proven liar.

The Friday OT: Nick Mason and Saucerful of Secrets; One of These Days I'm Going To Cut You Into Little Pieces

Nick Mason (yes, he of Pink Floyd) along with his new band played a small venue in London a couple of weeks ago. Among the tracks he played this Floyd classic and it turned out top notch.



For all you fellow dinosaurs out there, fine music. Great thanks to reader "JP" for the headsup. Youtube here.

5/31/18

The Core Gold (CGLD.v) NR today

There are only three possible reasons why the share price of Core Gold (CGLD.v) didn't drop like a stone on the release of its NR today:

1) No shareholders read the NR. Or if they did, they stopped reading before they got to the second half of it.
2) If shareholders did read the second part, they didn't understand it.
3) If shareholders understood it, they were arrested, kidnapped or died before they managed to put a sell order in.

I'm betting on 2) in this one, because they'd need to be pretty darned stupid to buy into this über-POS in the first place.


Standing Room Only

MIF Vancouver did slightly better. Close-run thing, though.


The difference between the guy standing up and the others is that the guy standing up gets paid for going on a cruise.

Novo Resources (NVO.v): A NR, a chart and a no comment


A chart here:



As for comment, this humble corner of cyberspace has nothing further to add to this post and message of late November 2017. Here's how that ended:

4. The issue: how to prove QH is right. And it's here where I have my major issue with NVO as an investment today because for the life of me, I don't know how anyone can prove what's there under the sand without digging it all up first. We've already seen drill assays are going to be a non-starter to get to an accurate resource because of quite literally the nugget effect (x100). We're about to get results from one small area and they'll be talked up/down by both sides of the argument no matter what they contain, they will not provide any sort of resolution. So, Large Scale Bulk sampling? Yup, take 500kg from here there there and here. Process it. Then tell me all the areas between the samples are the same. Okay. Time for that? Expense? F___ dude, suddenly you're just mining!

5. Now I know you like the play geologically. All good, but where's the investment? Honestly, I see this stock trading where it is for years (or diluted as new paper becomes treasury) because it simply doesn't have any way of proving anything. It's ultimately risk management and the de-risking of the NVO equity is going to be very difficult.

Bottom line: I have no issue with the geological arguments, no matter which side is eventually proven right. But the key word is "eventually", I see years of price inertia as the most probable near, medium and long-term future for NVO.

And nothing has changed since, either. Neutral NVO, staying that way, not falling for the BS hype being slathered all over the unwitting fools by people with hidden agendas over at CEO dot CA, either.

My favourite bit of the Great Panther Silver (GPR.to) (GPL) NR today

With fanfare (and weirdly a ConfCall later today, Lord only knows why), Great Panther Silver (GPR.to) (GPL) released its NR on the magical work of numerical unicorn flowers and love Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) for the Coricancha gold/polymetallic mine in Central Peru today. Promising 3m oz AuEq production and an 81% IRR, it's a wonderful document for anyone who remembers just how much of a moneypit it's been under its recent owners (it virtually bankrupted Gold Hawk, then even a company the size of Nyrstar threw in the towel after losing a crapload of money). So anyway, the best bit? This:
"The PEA economics include the closure costs attributed to the mine plan and exclude the closure expenses associated with legacy operations which are reflected on the Company's balance sheet."
Anyone who's ever travelled up from Lima on the Carretera Central will know exactly why. 

Can we please put an end to these joke PEAs that aren't even worth the pixels they're printed upon? An 81% IRR for a mine that couldn't even make money when gold and silver were hitting their highs? A environmental nightmare that GPR bought into and now wants somebody else to clean up for them for free? Give us all a break here, this BS isn't just annoying, it's an insult to the intelligence of even newbies to the sector.

Your David Erfle quiz

Originally booked to travel to Wesdome Gold (WDO.to) on a mine site visit in June 2018, David Erfle has suddenly and unexpectedly pulled out of the trip. Why has this last minute change occurred, ladies and gentlemen readers? Your choices are:

1) He found out Otto Rock was on the same site visit.
2) His wife denied him permission to travel.
3) He has decided that WDO is unworthy of his presence.

Place your bets!

5/30/18

The Lucara Diamond Corp (LUC.to) chart is quite a thing

Your humble scribe readily confesses to being just a little bit obsessed with the share price action of Lucara Diamond Corp (LUC.to) ever since that "disrupt diamonds" silliness back in late February when LUC.to announced the purchase of some diamond market tech blockchain company that was about to wrest control of the whole darned world from De Beers and Alrosa. What made it extra special was how LUC decided to hire Vancouver's very own chief among BSsers, Marin Katusa (yes, he of the Northern Die Nasty debacle), to pump the whole idea to a band of willing idiots with more money than commonsense (aka "his readers"). Here's a section of the IKN post that day:
"Marin Katusa manages to get a seven thousand word report out on the LUC plan, with nuance and the whole "disrupt mining" strategy, within about three minutes of the  NR coming out yesterday. Katusa of all people! The single worst and most blatant pump and dumper in the sector (and my stars there's competition) gets the quiet inside backstory from the Thomas/Lundin/McLeod Seltzer triumvirate and manages to put it all into a long 'splainer words of two syllables max for his willing crop of retail, proofed to within an inch of its life and all shiny-clean ready to roll. I mean, gimme a break here, the quiet tip-off to the chattering classes is one thing, blatant inside information from a supposedly whiter-than-white board of directors to the worst offending BS artist in Vancouver is quite another."
Anyway, cut to here in late May, one quarter later and how are things looking for LUC?


That's fascinating price action for the last two months, is it not? It would seem that somebody, somewhere is extremely keen on keeping this price floating above the C$2.00 line. 

However, this would definitely not be a case of a band of high-powered directors in LUC with undue influence on brokerages exerting pressure or calling in favours. No, no, perish the thought. Not even a suspicion of backroom dealings here.

The Hidroítuango dam in Colombia: Things are getting worse, authorities call for emergency evacuation

Maybe ten days ago, this humble corner of cyberspace brought you news of a potential disaster in Colombia. The Hidroítuango hydroelectric dam near Medellín in Antioquia is a new civil works project, was supposed to go online late last year but because of serious miscalculations in its design along with abnormally heavy rains is now under serious threat of collapse. If that happens, the houses and around 130,000 people living downstream could quite literally be wiped out (the boffins talk about a 26m high wall of water rushing down the river valley...not funny in the slightest).

Well people, news from Hidroítuango this morning tells us this story hasn't gone away. The latest is that the the danger level has been risen to Red Alert (highest level), the reservoir is full to overflowing, mountain peak overlooking the dam is now unstable and engineers expect landslides in the next few hours into the dam and reservoir area, roads 13km below the dam have been closed and local authorities are now calling for the evacuation of everybody downstream. Yup, 130,000 people. 

Apart from that, they're having a great day.

PS: I've been asked so here's the answer. The dam was built by a Brazil/Colombia consortium known as CCC, a JV between Brazil's private capitals company Camargo Correa (which has been closely linked in several of the Odebrecht bribery scandals), Colombia's Conisa Ramón HSA and Colombia's Constructore Concreto SA. They won the tender for the contract back in 2012.

UPDATE: An evacuation order has just been signed by the mayor of the local area, affecting 30 regions.

5/29/18

Wesdome Gold (WDO.to)

Without putting too fine a point on it...



...about bleedin' time, too.

Disclosure: Long and holding.

Future Money Trends is closing down

Daniel "Davidoff Cigar" Ameduri vowed to his readership in May 2017 that if Zinc One (Z.v) had not doubled from its 65c share price, he would close down his stock touting website. We quote:

Dear Reader,

We are so certain that this extremely undervalued company is a strong buy here, we are staking our entire careers on this single stock pick.
 
I, Daniel Ameduri, fully expect this company to lead the rally for zinc stocks, to the point that if my recommendation to you here today at CAD$0.65 doesn’t at least double over the next year, I will officially close down my letter.
 
In fact, I see this stock as a coiled spring, and I believe that I may be proven right over the next 30 days, with 11 months to spare!

Today is May 29th, 2018. Zinc One (Z.v) has never even got close to the $1 line, let alone reached the $1.30 level so confidently predicted by Ameduri. In fact Z.v is now a 24c stock and down 63c from his reco pump price. We therefore conclude that Daniel Ameduri is obliged to pull the plug on his stock promo empire and close Future Money Trends.



5/28/18

A question for David Erfle

How much has Palamina (P.v) paid you, in cash or shares, to pump their worthless POS of a stock to the naive sheep that listen to you? Hopefully the same as Mickey Fulp's payola, for the sake of your own back pocket.

A simple question for alias "goldfinger" on CEO.ca

How much money, in cash or shares or whatever else, have you been paid to pump Fiore Gold (F.v) to the readers of CEO dot CA?


Is it more or less than your readers have lost per person on average? What with full disclosure being fair to one and all.

A good read on the Colombia Presidential election result

This English language report and anal ysis by Matt Youkee on the result of yesterday's round one Presidential election in Colombia, fresh out the box at America's Quarterly, is as insightful and accurate as anything I've read on the matter in the Colombian press this morning. Here's a snippet:

After winning close to 40 percent of votes on Sunday, Duque is the odds-on favorite to sit in the Casa Nariño come August. That suggests a business-friendly climate under Colombia's next government.

Find out why that's true by reading the whole thing.

Pan American (PAAS) informs on Dolores

Yes indeed, the IKN First Law of Mining NRs in full operation. Funny they didn't mention anything about the decapitated body left at the mine gates or how the narcos are threatening to down anything flying out of the mine with Surface to Air Missile systems...wonder why that is? Anyway, here's the NR:

VANCOUVER, May 28, 2018 /PRNewswire/ - Pan American Silver Corp. (NASDAQ: PAAS; TSX: PAAS) ("Pan American Silver", or the "Company") today announces that it has initiated steps to reduce certain activities at its Dolores mine in Mexico following recent security incidents along the access roads being used to transport personnel and materials to and from the Dolores mine. The Company is working with state and federal authorities to provide safe access to the mine. The mine site remains secure. Ore stacking to the leach pads and the processing plant are currently operating at normal rates.

"Our priority is the safety and security of our personnel. We have been monitoring the situation, and with the recent incidents that have occurred along the access roads, we have determined the prudent course of action is to suspend personnel movements to and from the mine until the roads are safe for our employees," said Michael Steinmann, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company.
The Company will maintain personnel at the mine at levels necessary for site security and reduced operating activities.