start here

start here

The Daily IKN email digest, get all daily posts sent to you next day (& no ads)


Matt Badiali and the dumbest of dumb money

I hear a couple of things, reliable sources too:
1) Matt Badiali got 3,000 lifetime subbers signed up for his Banyan gig at $2k a pop. Yeah, do the math.

2) He's running a strict 20% trailing stop on picks, which has caused him to send sell notes out on first Sabina (early Feb) and then Tinka on Friday. See the TK trading action on Friday as an example of the fun and frolics these calls cause. 

Was he this freakin' stupid at birth, or was there a lobotomy involved somewhere along the way? He may as well walk up and down Howe St with a big target drawn on his back while shouting "Please Take My Subbers' Money" into a megaphone.

The top three most visited IKN posts this week are... reverse order:

Third Place: "Angry Geologist does Cordoba Minerals (CDB.v)". Why do we love TAG so much? Well it's not just her good looks and charm, it's more the way in which she gets to the heart of the geological matter so neatly. The generous use of sarcasm and biting irony helps things along nicely, too.

Second Place: "Just two things from the HIVE (HIVE.v) quarterly financials last night". I'm really in the wrong line here. These days, anything crypto or blockchain gets 2X the number of hits than the boring old miners. By the way, I think HIVE.v jumped at the bell Thursday on first reaction of its quarterly report and then dropped swiftly afterwards due to literacy. The first buyers were the usual suspects, the mouthbreather mining suckers who believe every last piece of stupidity that comes out of Fiore but HIVE is in a different world, not the mining sector where anal ysts and commentators have a limited grasp of what company financials are and how to read them. One of HIVE's weakest points is that it's in a sector covered by people who understand basic math (often advanced) and can see straight through the blather and nonsense.
First Place: "Your 2018 PDAC Bingo Card". Well yes, it's always a popular one.

Choose Life. Choose PDAC.

With apologies to Irvine Welsh and Danny Boyle.

Choose life. Choose geology. Choose engineering. Choose a family you see 50% of your working life. Choose a bigscreen television in the corner of the eating hall showing the sport everyone else likes but you don't. Choose flowcharts, scoops, scratch pens, and electrical mine winches. Choose hour long health and safety meetings, rice and potatoes with every meal and dental insurance. Choose fixed-interest mortgage repayments you just about keep up with. Choose a starter home you never see. Choose your friends you never see. Choose leisure wear you get to use two hours a week and luggage that's beaten to a pulp. Choose a three piece suite. Choose DIY and wondering where the hell you are on a Sunday morning as you get off shift. Choose sitting in that canteen watching mind-numbing spirit-crushing game shows, stuffing tuna bake into your mouth. Choose rotting away at the end of it all, pishing your last in a miserable home, nothing more than an engineer or geologist embarrassment to the selfish brats you have spawned to replace yourselves. Choose your future. Choose life,  . . . But why would I want to do a thing like that? I chose not to choose life: I chose something else. And the reasons? There are no reasons. Who needs reasons when you've got PDAC?


Your 2018 PDAC Bingo Card is available at the Silver Range Resources booth

Right here. Print yours off and avoid the rush or if you prefer, hunt down Silver Range Resources (SNG.v) at the show as Mike Power and guys have printed off a whole bunch of them and are putting up a bottle of scotch as a prize for the most complete of their cards. They'll explain their rules to you.

UPDATE: Nope, this isn't a joke:

From here.

The Friday OT: Madonna; Ray of light

Twenty years? Are you kidding me, did you say twenty years? The saddest part is that it's still the best pop album ever. But that's also the best part.

Madonna at her zenith, undisputed queen in all pomp and glory, appearing on Oprah to show off the title track for the first time and my stars she was in storming form that day. Anyone who still thinks she doesn't have a class voice need to see this, the rest of you who already know will enjoy every second. Youtube here.

Why are stock markets dropping? IKN explains

They haven't been in the greatest of shapes recently, but as from around midday yesterday and continuing this morning the USA and world stock markets have been accelerating the slump. For example, the Dow is down 3% from midday yesterday. 

Apropos, this humble corner of cyberspace has decided to take on the task of explaining why the markets are down in a way that even executive-level political leaders (mentioning no names of course) can understand. Here:

Further questions?

Chart of the day is...

...the dollar index (USD), monthlies:

Reports of my death have been etc etc.


Ok, so here's the deal with that Lithium X (LIX.v) NR just out

One of my first thoughts was of Shakespeare, of As You Like It, of the character Jacques and his famous "Seven Ages of Man" speech, specifically the fourth age of his soldier who is, "Seeking the bubble reputation/Even in the cannon’s mouth." This is a ballsy call by Brian Paes-Braga and I admire him for that, because this NR goes above and beyond the necessary message and has him saying, "I say this deal closes, follow me". Not the others at LIX, you'll note, this is Bri-Bri talking, taking the helm, signing off the NR, making a full-on stand and that requires real guts because if it falls through now anyone buying into the rebound today will have a litigation field day, those with the right sized treasury chest can consider going long LIX on the back of prose such as...
NextView continues to finalize the debt facilities to provide the remainder of the cash consideration to complete the Arrangement and, if it is not finalized before the end of next week, it will draw-down on its funding commitment from Tibet Summit in order to fund the Arrangement no later than March 9, 2018
Key executives and other insiders of the Company have indicated that, since they are not currently in possession of any undisclosed material information, they intend to purchase the Company's common shares on the open market if available at prices that they believe represent a significant discount to the consideration payable under the Arrangement. a virtual no-lose trade. We also now have a clear Drop Dead Date in March 9th and that's a solid marker, too. Therefore credit where it's due, this is an example of what all CEOs are supposed to do and IKN applauds the leadership shown today by Bri-Bri. If the deal now closes this humble corner of cyberspace will be tracking his moves for the next 30 years. Mind you, if not...less so.

Lithium X (LIX.v):Well that's all right then

Beats me why you're worried. Cheque's in the post.

VANCOUVER, March 1, 2018 /CNW/ - Lithium X Energy Corp.  ("Lithium X" or the "Company") (TSXV: LIX) (OTC: LIXXF) in response to recent trading in its shares, the Company is providing an update on the expected completion date (the "Effective Date") of the previously announced plan of arrangement (the "Arrangement") with NextView New Energy Lion Hong Kong Limited ("NextView").
The trading price of the Company's common shares has fallen over 20% in the past day of trading and resulted in a single stock circuit breaker that caused a temporary 5-minute halt in trading this morning.  The Company is not in possession of any undisclosed material information and is not aware of any change that would support this negative market sentiment.
In terms of completion of the Arrangement with NextView, in a conference call Tuesday evening with NextView's personnel, financial advisor and legal counsel, the Company was advised that NextView continues to finalize the debt facilities to provide the remainder of the cash consideration to complete the Arrangement and, if it is not finalized before the end of next week, it will draw-down on its funding commitment from Tibet Summit in order to fund the Arrangement no later than March 9, 2018.  NextView was incorporated under the laws of Hong Kong, S.A.R., with its head office located in Hong Kong. NextView was incorporated by Shanghai NextView Xiangjin Investment Partnership (Limited) ("Shanghai NextView") and Tibet Summit as an acquisition vehicle to complete the Arrangement.
Key executives and other insiders of the Company have indicated that, since they are not currently in possession of any undisclosed material information, they intend to purchase the Company's common shares on the open market if available at prices that they believe represent a significant discount to the consideration payable under the Arrangement.
Additional information regarding the terms of the Arrangement is set out in Lithium X's management information circular dated January 3, 2018, which is filed under the Company's SEDAR profile at
On behalf of the Board of Directors of Lithium X
By: "Brian Paes-Braga"
President and CEO, Director

Checking in on Rye Patch Gold (RPM.v) in 2018 so far

They'll be happy to discuss the contents of this chart with you at their PDAC booth.

You know those obnoxious, irritating bastards who sneer at you with smarmy looks on their faces and whine, "Haaa haaa, toldyaso" in that nasal tone guaranteed to stir desires of fists against noses? Well, toldyaso.

Royal Road (RYR.v): This is why I like Tim Coughlin...

...and the way he goes about the job. We can summarize today's NR with "We drilled Piedra Imán, it's dogshyte, kill it, move on". No hanging on, no faffing around, no pretending the project is worth keeping and just this attitude separates RYR from roughly 98% of all other explorecos. Totally refreshing, a pity more aren't as upfront.

I don't own any RYR yet, but it's one I watch closely.  You should, too.

KPMG reports on risks faced by top mining executives

Original news release right here.

TORONTO, March 1, 2018 /CNW/ - Overbooking at quality lunch establishments is the top risk facing mining and metals companies this year, finds an annual survey of Canadian mining executives by KPMG in Canada.  As volatility re-emerges in reservations markets, shifting prices will be a key theme as mining industry participants from around the world gather in Toronto next week for the 86th annual Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada convention to get absolutely lathered.
The latest issue of Insights into Mining shows a relatively consistent risk landscape compared to previous years as Canadian and global mining businesses continue to navigate Michelin three star restaurants in a highly competitive industry. Booking risk and the average price for Dom Perignon returned to the Top 10 this year, while access to private rooms, AMEX rhodium cards, controlling bowels and trying to drive Ferraris while drunk, maintaining an antisocial right to talk loudly and managing walking instability also figure high on the list of top risks.
"Restaurant booking risk is once again the leading challenge facing mining executives as they consider the downside of the recent upswing in prices," says Heather Cheeseman, GTA Mining Leader and Partner, Audit and Risk Consulting, KPMG in Canada. "With weed and crypto stocks making gains, the competition for the best tables at lunch is now fierce and PAs are under pressure to secure the best lunch spots without going on long waiting lists, else incur the wrath of the utter pieces of shit who pay their monthly salaries."
Below are the Top 10 risks facing Canadian mining and metals companies in 2018:
  1. Restaurant lunch reservation risk
  2. AMEX rhodium availability (includes risk of embarrassment in using a mere Platinum or Black card in front of peers)
  3. Access to best tables
  4. Having to be pleasant to "the staff" else face discrimination lawsuits
  5. Dom Perignon price risk
  6. Private room availability
  7. PDAC hangover risk
  8. Ability to drive back to office without DUI arrest 
  9. Controlling bowels
  10. Capital allocation of lunch on expense account without anyone noticing the line item
Each year, KPMG in Canada updates the market with critical insights into the risks, challenges and multi-year trends that are top of mind for Canadian miners. Learn more by accessing the Insights into Mining report.

Torex Gold (TXG): Both sides

When a mining company starts shouting about THE TRUTH of a difficult CSR situation but is also very selective with the facts it decides to present to its audience, it raises the hackles of those of us with a better idea of the shades of grey that lay between the black and the white of propaganda presentation. This humble corner of cyberspace is not saying that TXG is in the wrong in its ongoing dispute with locals, what it is saying is that minor technical details are not quite the same as the story it prefers to present to the world:
  • That part about the strike, blockade and protest being all done and things getting back to normal by the end of February? Nope, sorry, still going strong.
  • The way they don't tell you that the local landowners want to rescind the contract and state that the contract has been broken by the company due to their lack of compliance to promises? That too.
  • The same local landowners who have now set up a protest at the edge of the El Limon pit, taking over the area and stopping mining activities from happening. That, too.
  • The way that locals have stopped the flow of water to the company? Errr....this one's important, because the No Water = No Mine equation is not a difficult one to understand wherever you're from. TXG calls it "extortion", the locals call it protest, the impasse continues.

Those of who who want the other side to the story should check out this report and also this, filed last week in the Guerrero news site El Sur (no Spanish ability? Google Translate will get you 90% of the way there). Again, be clear that in the view of this blogger neither side is the owner of absolute truth, but getting both sides will help the more discerning investor get a handle on the FUBAR. The moral is really simple, don't go mining in Guerrero. But hey...the rocks were there...and they were cheap...right?

Just two things from the HIVE (HIVE.v) quarterly financials last night

You can fight out the meaning of the borderline-passable gross margin, the stored coins and what have you all by yourself. I just want to point out two numbers on the P+L that stuck out at me:

That travel number is hilarious, you can run a neat and efficient junior exploreco for the price of HIVE's travel. It also gives you some idea how much it costs to fly a fully loaded private jet down to Cartagena from Vancouver, but that's another story.

But the really interesting one is that DD&A number, because I know I'm not the brightest lightbulb when it comes to the intricacies of the wonderful world of crypto, but I do know my way around a set of RegFs. And you're telling me that $16.2m of that snazzy shiny computery kit that goes out of fashion quickly due to the well-documented ETH hashrate burden was only marked down by a million, guys? Seriously? Wonks and nerds like me who care about such things will know why this could be important for the future, the rest of you can hi-five over the temperature in Sweden. Okay, never mind and no need to answer, let's move on so here's a pleasant tune with which to brighten your day:


Thanks, Bobby!

Bobby Genovese and BG Capital Group just sent me over an RSVP invite for the Bunker Hill Mining bash at PDAC on Sunday. And that's a good thing:

Because we all need to remember that Bobby G is the biggest shareholder, is pulling all the strings on this vehicle and is also the very same Bobby Genovese facing criminal fraud charges from the US SEC for the way he pumped and dumped Bunker Hill in its last incarnation, Liberty Silver, for millions in ill-gotten gains. Presumably James West will be there, his partner in crime the last time around. Say hi for me, yeah? 

Anyway, all readers of IKN should get their tails down to the BNKR bash at the Hockey Hall of Fame (30 Yonge St) on Sunday March 4th, starts 6:30pm and goes on til 11pm. Tell the doorman Otto sent you, mmmkay?

Angry Geologist does Pretium (PVG)

Blinking flip and gawd love us, the lady is on a roll at the moment. Here's TAG doing Pretium (PVG), with eyes on the presentation the company just gave to BMO this week. And by the way, I was out by 0.16g/t and that on the math is a good call, in this type of production environment we're talking about rounding errors. Anyway, consider me in agreement with TAG on this one.

PS: We also note that Pretium (PVG) had its first fatal accident of a worker at the Brucejack mine two days ago. Maybe they forgot to announce that to the wider world, or perhaps they're going the Tahoe Resources route and just burying (pardon the pun) any bad news of this type.

By the way, that Lithium X (LIX.v) break fee and escrow agreement

Reader 'D' pointed this out in a mail this morning:

"The reverse break fee has been secured through the deposit of US$16,000,000 in trust with Lithium X’s counsel in Hong Kong, subject to the terms of an escrow agreement under which those funds may not be released without the consent of both parties"

Ever seen an escrow with a veto clause before? What kind of wet-behind-the-ears CEO agreed to these terms, can't be ver....ah, yeah. Right.

Aurania Resources (ARU.v): At last! Geologists who can speak my language!

This from the current Aurania Resources (ARU.v) photo gallery:

Wonderful. IKN thanks A. Reader for the heads-up.


Bacanora (BCN.v), NextView and Lithium X (LIX.v)

Your humble scribe's attention is caught by this news release from Bacanora Minerals (BCN.v) this evening, in which this company dedicated to lithium states that it has failed to receive the C$53.5m approx promised to it by NextView Capital. The deal, first announced in mid-December 2017, was supposed to have closed at the end of January. When it didn't BCN announced that it was giving NextView more time and stated among other things that... "...both parties remain committed to proceeding with the Placing."

But now it looks like NextView couldn't come up with the cash. Time's up. Deal's off. No soup for you. Now, does that remind you of anything? Well...
  • Lithium X (LIX.v) is a lithium junior
  • In mid-December it received a buyout offer from a company called NextView Capital, ticket price C$265m.
  • Yes, that's the same NextView Capital, why did you ask?
  • The deal was supposed to have closed a couple of weeks ago, but then on February 14th LIX.v announced that NextView needed more time. To quote that NR, "NextView has advised the Company that it is seeking alternative funding from a commercial lender in order to obtain the required funds on the most competitive terms available and that the proposed facility with the commercial lender is currently anticipated to be established and funded shortly but has been delayed by, and until after, the Chinese New Year holiday."

But hey, I'm sure everything will be all right. Y'know, just get the Chinese New Year out the way and the cheque will be winging its way over. Right?

"There's a sardonic blogger called Inca Kola..."

The dulcet tones of Andrew Bell give the 2018 IKN Bingo Card a pumperooney on 'Market Call today. Right here, minute 1:50.

Kintavar (KTR.v)

Seriously, why do I bother? This gets pumped in one of those blather and nonsense NRs in mid-January that gets the mouthbreathers all worked up, including...

In total, 10 of the 12 drill holes intercepted the favorable lithologies with copper mineralization in the form of bornite and chalcopyrite. Out of these holes, 7 holes intercepted several tens of meters of copper mineralization.
“We are very pleased with this first drilling program on the Mitchi project. We drilled more meters than expected because several of the holes showed mineralization deeper than first thought. We now believe this could be both a near surface open pit type target and also an underground target beneath.” commented Kiril Mugerman, President and CEO of Kintavar Exploration.

"KINTAVAR DRILLS 206.3 METERS OF COPPER MINERALIZATION (0.18% Cu & 1.65 g/t Ag) WITH TWO MAIN ZONES OF 21.9m OF 0.52% Cu & 5.62 g/t Ag AND 16.5m OF 0.50% Cu & 4.30 g/t Ag" the NR today. If the CEO is "very pleased" with those kind of numbers he'd have a multiple orgasm in public if he ever found something economically viable on his property. And be clear, you can call it "mineralization" til the cows come home, but even with the best will in the world and favourable met, recoveries and current metals prices that rock is worth no more than U$11.50 per tonne. The only company who could mine that number at a profit is Nevsun and that's because their....cough...labour costs are so low. Why this KTR thing's  share price is down just 3c today and the company still running a market cap of $28m is beyond me, it's worth zero. Plain fat zero.

In the end, the neophytes who buy into these pumps have three choices:

1) Learn the cheap way (this involves not acting like a nodding donkey every time you get a pitch run at you)
2) Learn the hard way (e.g. KTR.v, but please remember the names of the people who got you into this crapola).
3) Just carry on flushing your own money down the toilet, all your life. And as we live in a (relatively) free society, don't think for a minute that I'm going to try to stop you. Your life, do with it what you want. Hell, do it long enough and become one of the scumbag pumpers if you like.

Your friendly reliable Cassandra on the Lucara ( news

There are so many red flags to this idea it's difficult to know where to start.

1) Wouldn't you love to know just why Lamb decided to resign rather than go along with this whole "disrupt diamonds" gig?

2) You remember how he got its hind quarters handed back on a plate on the Lesedi La Rona? How LUC put it up for auction in its raw state for U$70m reserve, how the establishment warned the market to stay away, how bidding only got to U$61m, then how it was quietly sold a year later for U$53m? 

3) And now LUC is taking on the establishment again, only in a much more dangerous way for De Beers and all its friends.

4) What's more, 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.

5) The thing is, the "disrupt mining" plan is being laid out as if LUC is the diamond world's answer to Uber. It's not. Big differences. As in biiiiiiiig differences. Taxi driving is a business model that has a deep supply pool and had a product with obvious cost weakness. The majority of adult human beings can supply the skill (drive a car) but only a few people were allowed to charge money to drive a taxi (badge holders, who paid a prohibitive price for the privilege). So lets talk about diamonds for a second:
  • The rough diamond is a small part of the price you pay for the finished product. I'm not a diamond expert and will never pretend to be, but even I know the difference between a rough diamond and what you see set in an engagement ring. I know the price a company like LUC gets for its diamonds on average and the price of a cut stone. I know what the "Four Cs" are and only three of them depend on the quality of the stone, while at least one is all about how human hands treat it and arguably two others are highly influenced by the skill of diamond cutting.
  • Which brings us to the second key point, the finished product depends on highly skilled labour. This is not driving a car, it's not letting out your owned property for a night. Very few human beings can do the job we're talking about here, the equipment is expensive, the sector prohibitive to enter. 
  • Which also means that a small overall supplier to those human beings, i.e. Lucara, can either try to steal the lunch of the big player in the sector (De Beers) and be crushed like a pesky insect, or it can STFU and make its reasonable profit on the things that come out of its mines. When the call goes out from De Beers to stay away from all LUC diamonds, not just a single 1,109 carat example, LUC will suddenly find its wares on a secondary market at secondary prices.
  • And we haven't even mentioned the certification process yet! A closed shop like no other and controlled by serious, establishment money, they will of course let a big, headline-making diamond of size get the labels it deserves but what happens to the normal run-of mine material from a company that wants to wrest the market away from the people who pay their dinners?

What LUC announced yesterday is its own suicide note as a diamond miner. The upper echelons of De Beers will be worried about what was announced, but do you seriously think they're just going to let LUC take their market away thanks to a new-fangled blockchain idea? They've never faced competition to their quasi-monopoly before? They haven't squashed any newcomers like nuisance gadflies before? They've remained at the very top of one of the most profitable businesses in the world using totally above-board and proper business strategies? That Marin Katusa is in cahoots with this scheme is all the more sophisticated sector player needs to know about LUC going forward, but it only takes a few minutes' thought to see the glaring holes and obvious mortal weaknesses in what LUC is trying to achieve. It's less "disrupt diamonds", more "disrupt retirement plans of LUC shareholders" and the daydreaming fools now running this company need to be stopped for their own good.


Angry Geologist does Cordoba Minerals (CDB.v)

Right here.

Your 2018 PDAC Bingo Card

Yes indeed ladies and gentlemen, it's that wonderful time of the year again and in time-honoured style IKN offers up its traditional turkey and stuffing PDAC Bingo Card for your edification and enjoyment at the big Toronto bash next week. As always, instructions are simplicity incarnate:

1) Print off your copy
2) Walk around PDAC next week and when you overhear one of the phrases, cross it off.
3) As soon as you fill your card, send it in to IKN Nerve Centre for your fabulous prize*.

So without further ado, here's the 2018 edition of PDAC Bingo:

Vote early and often!

*A chance to kiss Tim Oliver's asses

Newcrest is basically trying to buy Latin America

Piece by piece. Added to SolGold and now Lundin Gold in Ecuador yesterday, this morning we've had news it's moving on Mirasol in Chile and now Almadex in Mexico.

When they go JV on something in Venezuela, we'll know they're serious.

Pershing Gold (PGLC) ( gives us the best NR of the day

So far at least, the day is still young.

Check it out here and you only need to consider the title line...

"Pershing Gold Begins Preliminary Construction Activities at Relief Canyon" start the guffaws and yoks. Seriously folks, what the blinking flip is a "preliminary construction activity"? Carrying some sacks of concrete over to a site? Putting the kettle on to make some tea before getting down to business? Putting on overalls? Ah wait, it's this:
"On February 13, 2018, Ames Construction began initial land clearing in preparation for potential construction at Relief Canyon, including future heap leach pads, haul roads and waste rock storage facilities".

We then get a photo of this preliminary construction activity and it turns out to be... guy with a dozer, undoubtedly on a daily rate. You cannot make this shit up people, this is what a $60m market cap company considers a material news release that it simply must tell its shareholders about and if you can't hear the word SCAM being screamed into your aural tracts yet, just keep reading.
"If the Company is able to achieve further financing for the project, it will then be able to move directly into construction of the heap leach pads, overland conveyors, crushing facilities, contractor yards, and process plant optimization."
Scholars of the language will appreciate the use of the first conditional in that sentence. If one thing happens then the second will. Then again, if the first thing doesn't happen...

Pershing Gold (PGLC) is of course the same waste of time and space pumped by the bullshit artist Byron King a couple of years ago back when it was a $4 stock. As IKN put it at the time:
"For the record, Byron King at Agora has a big following but he's no mining specialist. When it comes to these juniors he gets told what to pump by his superiors who do very nicely from the deals (such is the multi-layered ways of these morally bankrupt pieces of shit who are pretending to care about you and want you to become rich)."

Even at half the price today, it's still a waste of time.


The IKN Weekly, out now

It was either a crochet pattern for duck feet slippers 
or a shot of a Ferrari 458. No contest, really.

IKN458 has just been sent to subscribers. Mostly photos, in fact.

Newcrest doubles down on Ecuador

It's already sponsoring SolGold, now Newcrest is 27.7% owner of Lundin Gold ( via its $250m placement announced today. LUG and Newcrest also get to play JV on LUG's early stage assets away from Fruta del Norte. The Aussies are betting big on Lenín Moreno.