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5/23/15

WTFUC

I really like this Screwtape Files post, "Worldwide Turmoil, Financial Upheaval and Cataclysm"  (aka WTFUC).

Something that's held up really well is...

...IKN's call on Argentina's bond default back in July 2014 (somebody reminded me about the post today and I just re-read it). When the whole issue was hot we asked "who cares?", we answered "very few people outside of the vulture funds", we explained why. Here we are nigh on a year later and surprise surprise, nobody cares whether Argentina's in default or not. The link is here, the essence is in the wrap-up:

"The bottom line here is that Argentina doesn't need to pay and it can fall into default, because 1) the consequences for the country are much better than the chain reaction that it might (repeat might, lot of discussion over RUFO right now) set off if it pays and 2) the consequences for the country really aren't that bad even compared to a neutral position. 
"...this is at least part of the point I alluded to a couple of days ago in this post, the bit about the difference between the law and justice. Yes for sure the law says that Argentina defaults and it's in the wrong, but only according to the eyes of the law, which in this case is personified by a dusty idiot of a biased judge in New York who should have been put out to grass a decade ago and is showing signs of Alzheimer's. Therefore Argentina can and indeed will ignore this book-driven law and bide its time until the real terms of agreement are struck and that will only happen via true justice, a far more powerful thing than a mere law."

whole thing here

Ireland offers the world a lesson in equality

Voted, too. By referendum and democratic majority, too. A landslide result, too. In a country deemed to be deeply Catholic, too. No matter what age, gender, sexuality, skin colour, financial wealth, physical health, education, location or any other matter that authorities and dogma might want to impose on humans in order to separate and categorize us, we're all equal.

A standing ovation for Ireland today, the country that truly understands equality.

The most visited IKN post this week is...

...this one, "Insider selling at Hudbay (HBM) (HBM.to)".

It was the most popular by a long way, too. To repeat the refrain, if I could be bothered to write on more widely held, larger market cap and altogether bigger companies and stocks, this blog would get a lot more hits and visitors. But I don't. Because I can't. And it doesn't. Which is fine.

5/22/15

Friday night classic junior mining NR of the week

Thank Altan Nevada (ANE.v) for this week's edition. The most satisfying thing about this one is that it has all the feeling and gist contained in the title line:



Ah, wonderful.

About that "60 day pause" called by Southern Copper (SCCO) at Tia Maria

Just the one protester dead this afternoon, plus four others injured and three police officers hurt as well. Hey, good job they're all on a pause, could get serious otherwise.


The Friday OT: Goldfrapp; Strict Machine

Because all videos should have dancing dogs.






Shrodinger

You can tell it's a slow news day when this is the best thing out there:

Checking in on the value being added to First Mining Finance (FF.v) by Daniel Ameduri of Future Money Trends

In "Has First Mining Finance (FF.v) fired Daniel Ameduri of Future Money Trends yet?" dated May 14th, IKN wondered out loud as to the general wisdom of hiring the owner of a hard money goldbug website with limited reach as your investment relations expert and floated the merest possibility of a suggestion that perhaps maybe Keith Neumeyer's act of throwing $7k a month straight down the toilet was symptomatic of greater issues at FF.v.

That was when FF.v traded at 37c. It's now 33c. Apparently Mr Ameduri is still employed by FF.v and is in line for a 100,000 option payout from the company very soon, too. Adding value, Keith. Adding value.


Chart of the day is...

...the second look at the gold/copper ratio this month:




On May 4th we asked "how low can it go?" and as it happens, that day was the low. Probably just a coincidence. So I suppose the question now is to wonder how high it can go and more pertinently, whether it'll go higher via gold upping or copper downing. As things stand today, the latter seems more likely.

PS: And just so you know, at some point today it'll get to the stage when I see the word 'lasagna' in the title line of an e-mail and won't even bother opening it. Thank you for your kind comprehension.

5/21/15

Even more Guatemala

Mike Allison at Central American Politics has you covered on this accelerating story, keep your eyes peeled there, here's today's episode. President Otto Pérez Molina is looking shakier by the day. By the hour, in fact.

NioCorp (NB.to): The Tommy Humphreys bullshit pump job collapses

Surprise. Not.


Yes indeed retail sheep, Tommy can do all this to your portfolio. And more!

And yeah, toldyaso.

So.

And so.

More Trevali (TV.to): The result of the KY Jelly application by company to retail shareholder

IKN made reference yesterday to Trevali (TV.to) and its propensity to dilute the living sexual intercourse out of its share count, but what does that mean to you, dear reader? Well, take a look at these two charts:

First here's the market cap of Trevali at each quarter end. We get this by using the filed number of shares outstanding (thank you SEDAR), plus the share price at end quarter (thank you TSX website).


As you can see, since end 2010 TV.to has changed from a $100m market cap company into a near-$350m once this latest dilution is factored in (presumably it's closed before end 2q15). Yes indeed TV.to is a growth story, getting bigger and better and all sorts of capitalist wonderful, right? Well yeah, except for one group of stakeholders:


You guys at retail shareholder level have watched TV.to the company grow, but TV.to the stock flatline. All the pain, none of the gain. And to be clear, the descriptive noun for somebody taken advantage in this way is "sucker".


UPDATE: And the bot deal gets upped to $30m. You can't make this shit up.

The lasagna recipe

I make lasagna maybe once a month on average*, basically because the kids like it. Hey, who doesn't like lasagna? This morning's mailbox includes reader WL (a new mailer), who noticed it's been mentioned a couple of times on these humble pages and asked for the recipe. So rather than just send it to one person...

There's no big secret; if there is one it's to care about the tomatoes; what you use and how you use them, because it makes all the difference.

Ingredients
3kg plum tomatoes (they grow round here, delicious and dirt cheap). Go for the bigger ones if you have a choice, always go for ripe, red ones.
3/4kg minced beef
1 medium onion
2 cloves garlic
1/2 kg cheese (50% a tilsit-type that melts completely, 50% a harder whiter cheese that doesn't, both local cheeses, nothing out the ordinary, use whatever you prefer in the end) EDIT for clarity after a mail came in: The tilsit here isn't real tilsit with that way strong flavour, it's a cheese "made in the style" that's normal tasting and melts nicely. Bottom line: the cheese and its strength is up to you, the point is to have one that melts a lot and one that melts a bit.
Milk, flour and butter for the bechamel
Packet dried lasagna (a decent local brand, works perfectly)
Olive oil/cooking oil. You'll need salt on hand, too.

Method
Cut tomatoes in half, then grate them through the large holes of a cheese grater so that you grate up all the flesh and you're left with the skin in your hand (which you throw away). The pips are grated through too. 3kg of this takes time, so stick some decent music on and be careful about those fingernails on the grater. And yes, it's worth it. And no, don't stick the tomatoes whole into a blender and make them into a liquid skin and all. Do it right, you'll notice the difference when you get that first fork of finished lasagna in your mouth, this is way waaay more important than getting anal about the over-debated fresh/dry pasta question.

Big pan, 50% olive oil/50% cooking oil in the bottom, heat it up, when hot (not mega-hot though) throw your grated tomato in there. Bit of salt, bit of water, put the lid on, wait til it starts boiling, turn the heat right down, leave it there a couple of hours minimum, remember to stir every so often, maybe last half hour without the lid on to help the final reduction process. All this matters. Again, do it right and your tomato sauce will pay you back with interest. The difference between this and that shit they sell you in jars is enormous, measure it in light years.

In another pan (I use a large frying pan) sweat off the finely cut onion and the very finely cut garlic cloves (low heat). Add the minced beef, stick the heat up to medium, cook through until brown, salt to taste.

When the tomato sauce is done, add 90% to the minced beef. Make sure your mix is nicely sloppy. Cook through a little more. Okay, the mix is now done, that's the work out the way, relax.

Two Pyrex dishes (we use them, metal baking trays are just as good I suspect), into which:

Layer of dry lasagna
Layer of mince/tom sauce mix
Layer of dry lasagna
Layer of mince/tom sauce mix
Layer of dry lasagna
Layer of mince/tom sauce mix
Layer of dry lasagna
Then a final layer of the tomato only sauce you held back from earlier.

Then on top of that the two types of cheese, grated, sprinkled on top. Put as much or as little as you like (we tend to put a lot because the kids like cheese). Into a hot oven for 30 minutes.

You now have 30 minutes to make bechamel. Melt butter, add flour (equal quantity to butter), make roux, add milk and a little salt (be careful with your salt in bech, it gets salty quickly esp if you're using salted butter, go for a very small pinch here) low heat to boiling point, stirring all the time (not joking). When thickened turn off heat, it's done. Don't ask me for the quantities, I do this by eye, but while I'm here and if memory serves, it's 30g butter and 30g flour for one pint of milk. But I could be wrong, check somewhere else if you're not sure.

Take out the lasagna, spoon a layer bechamel over the top, back in the oven for another 15 to 20 minutes (do that by eye, depends on your heat setting). Job done.

Some green leaf salad's nice with lasagna. Serve on a plate and put it in your mouth and chew it and swallow it, repeat until plate empty. End


*Though make enough for two full meals for four people and half gets frozen

Chart of the day is...

...zinc 12 months (again):




We noted a few days ago that ity couldn't break that stubborn $1.10/lb line. Now it's broken back under $1.00/lb (not shown on this Kitco daily updated, Zn went to 99.5c this morning and right now is a few thousands under the buck). Not blaming the dollar today, either. It's down half a penny.

5/20/15

Trevali (TV.to) raising money by selling shares? Say it ain't so!


Trevali: Production at Santander mine expected to commence in late 2011

That was when Trevali had a little over 144m shares out. No need for more, right? Wrong:


Santander finally made it to production over three years after that splash header and had managed to get the share count to 280m in the process. Now they're going to pull the same trick on the back of their latest marginal operation at Caribou and hope that nobody notices.
Trevali Mining Corporation ("Trevali" or the "Company") (TSX:TV)(LMA:TV)(OTCQX:TREVF)(FRANKFURT:4TI) announces that it has entered into an agreement with Dundee Securities Ltd. on behalf of a syndicate of underwriters (together, the "Underwriters"), to purchase on a "bought deal" basis by way of short form prospectus, 19,610,000 common shares of the Company ("Shares") subject to all required regulatory approval at a price per Share of $1.02 (the "Issue Price") for gross proceeds of $20,002,200 (the "Offering"). continues here

Oh cool, more dilution. Tonight's news puts this company at a minimum 305.537m shares out (and it's probably more already), over double the "oh we gonna be miners any minute" number above. How this company gets away with this scam year after year, all the while getting its free pass from the sycophant brokerages due to the commish generated, it's absolutely.....well, it's this:

Guatemala news: The presidency's reeling

May you live in interesting times, Otto. Mike Allison over at his blog dedicated to Central American politics has been covering this one closely, he's the guy to read and here's how his post today starts:
"Earlier today, the presidents of the Central Bank (Julio Suarez) and Social Security Institute (Juan de Dios Rodríguez) were arrested by Guatemalan authorities. Over a dozen other officials were arrested including the vice president of the Social Security Institute. The charges range from fraud, conspiracy, insider trading, illegal collection of fees, and active and passive bribery."

Dilbert on geology (now more than just Dilbert)

I was sent this today. Sharing it here.


That's massively good.

UPDATE: MM sends in a couple more. Both worthy. I particularly like the C&H.


Chart of the day is...

...the US Dollar index (USD):


Don't ask me, I don't have a single clue either. I'm justing sticking this up here to remind myself what's centre of the universe right now. I'm now going to have a shower, another coffee and then probably make some lasagna. A better use of my morning than watching the open.

UPDATE: Lasagna came out well, thanks for asking.

5/19/15

B2Gold (BTG) (BTO.to): The Clive speaks about fight night

On this BNN TV link, with video and everything. Here's your excerpt:

Back in January, a punch up erupted between Clive Johnson, the CEO of B2Gold (BTO.TO 0.49%) and Daniel Earle, a sell side analyst for TD Securities at a posh dinner hosted by the bank as part of their annual mining conference in Toronto. 
The clash at Modus Restaurant, which was said to be largely fuelled by generous amounts of red wine served to the mining luminaries, left Johnson with black eye and a pair of broken glasses. 
Both B2Gold and TD acknowledged the incident, but declined to elaborate on the circumstances. Speaking in his first televised interview since the incident, Johnson told BNN he regrets the what happened. 
“I don’t think anyone involved in that was particularly proud of what happened at the end of the day. It had nothing to do with business. It was an incredibly unfortunate situation,” he said.
Whole thing here

PS: A little music while you check out the linko up there:

The funniest thing about Bitgold (XAU.v)

Before anything else, be clear that I don't have a dog in this fight. This is not my thing, I don't care enough (about cryptos or about money in general), I own no shares of Bitgold (XAU.v) and that's not going to change, however high or low it might go. And though I'm sure that one fine day it'll collapse to a more sensible level, at which point it might (or might not) be worth looking to see if there's any steak behind all that sizzle, I couldn't hazard the slightest guess as to when that might be so if it goes higher than today it won't surprise me much. And before you try to get all fundamental (and fundamentalist) on me about the company and what it has, be clear that I've also done what most of you out there haven't done and read the 126 page Bitgold listing application dated May 8th and filed to SEDAR by XAU.v on May 12th. Yeah all of it, top to bottom, even the boring bits, so I know about the thing, how the company is structured, who has the shares and how much they paid for pieces. That's not the funny bit.

I've also watched with amusement as XAU.v shares have taken off and flown like the veritable eagle since the IPO last Monday two Mondays ago. Which has been fun, and rather silly too, but that's not the funniest part either.

Nah, the fun has been watching the rise in seething hatred for the stock in people who play the Canadian junior mining companies, partly because they now feel stupid for caring about digging holes in the ground and thinking that precious metals are the true source of all wealth, partly due to the nostalgia and the "hey, remember when we could hoodwink em all like that too?" feelings it brings on by watching from the sidelines. Or maybe it's the thought of what XAU.v directors would do if they were offered a 100m share bought deal at $3 by some brokerage tomorrow morning. Or even $2. Fark, they could raise a quarter billion, buy out ten shitty explorecos and reinvent themselves as Sandstorm's next acquisition target. And face it, Nolan's bought into worse stories.

All because somebody has managed to out-think the Canadian Venture Exchange regulars and man oh man, they're gonna hate Roy for that. So good luck to Bitgold says IKN, I hope the bubble doesn't burst too soon and even when it does, the company has enough real backbone to make something of its plan. 


Why I've always wet myself laughing about this asteroid mining thing

SMBC sums it up neatly, here.

The Southern Silver (SSV.v) pump begins to take shape

You may not remember this post back in March that looked at the participants of the placement ran at the time in Southern Silver (SSV.v), but basically it noted that Electrum Group looked as though it was making a long term bet, while various hangers-on getting ready to make a short-term killing on the back of the bigger sponsor.

And so to today, with this NR on Electrum buying into one of the specific SSV.v projects and this NR announcing a new round of financing for insiders. IKN would again like to make crystal clear its opinion of Electrum's position compared with the opportunists who'll drive the upcoming promo, as from what we see the bigboy player is actually in this to try to do some real development and discovery work on the SSV project, thereby going for longer-term gains. The others milling around, less so. It's going to be interesting to watch how this one pans out the in the weeks to come, if only as a case study in how retailers get raped by a corrupt system. Let's see how the pump runs come end June/early July, when those first placement shares come out of escrow.


Imperial (III.to): Murray Edwards bails them out (again)

Further to that classic late night Friday NR. This eventual $42m so or makes the total...errr...invested (?) by Mr Edwards in III.to since Mt Polley went haywire at around $150m, give or take.

Imperial Metals Corporation (the "Company") (TSX:III) announces that its board of directors, subject to regulatory and legal approvals, has approved an agreement to borrow $30 million from Edco Capital Corporation ("Edco") by means of an unsecured loan at an interest rate of 12% per annum and maturing in six months from date of issue (the "Loan"), with an arrangement fee of 1% of the principal of the Loan payable in cash. Edco is owned by N. Murray Edwards, a significant shareholder of the Company. The proceeds of the Loan will be used to support the ongoing ramp up of production at the Company's Red Chris mine and provide working capital for the Company.  
The board of directors has also approved the Company undertaking a rights offering of approximately $80 million to shareholders, debentureholders and warrantholders ("Rightholders") subject to definitive terms and conditions as well as approvals from the Toronto Stock Exchange ("TSX") and securities regulatory authorities. The rights offering will be for units comprised of a combination of common shares and convertible debentures. Proceeds of the rights offering will be used to repay the Loan, to support the ongoing ramp up of production at the Red Chris mine, to fund the restart of operations at the Company's Mount Polley mine and to provide working capital for the Company. The rights offering will proceed after the Company has obtained an extension of the completion date under the Senior Credit Facility to a date which is reasonably expected to follow the successful completion of the ramp up of production at the Company's Red Chris mine. 
Rightholders will be able to subscribe for more than their proportionate share of units should not all Rightholders take up their pro rata share and the Company expects the rights will trade through the facilities of the TSX.  
Edco, its affiliates, and The Fairholme Partnership, LP, significant Rightholders collectively holding approximately 56% of the Company's issued and outstanding shares, 69.5% of the outstanding debentures and 100% of the outstanding warrants, have advised that their current intention is that they will subscribe for their proportionate share of units and, in exchange for a fee of 3% of the subscription proceeds in respect of all rights not owned by them, back stop the rights offering such that they will purchase all units not otherwise purchased pursuant to the exercise of rights by other Rightholders. All directors of the Company have agreed to participate in the rights offering.

Your author's mind is cast back to November and the 3q14 results, in which III.to pointed out that the recently completed $115m raising was expected to be enough to get Mt Polley sorted out and Red Chris running nicely. And give or take $80m (and counting) they were absolutely right. Beats me why people think mining companies are run by bullshitters and liars...


Chart of the day is...

...copper:



Copper futures had held the U$2.90/lb line pretty well. Until today.

5/18/15

Tia Maria: Peruvian reporters finally get round to asking locals about the protests...

...and when they do, you suddenly get a very different picture to the one being force-fed to the general public by neoliberal media.


It's Spanish language and it's eight minutes long. It was part of a Sunday night popular national level TV reporting show aired last night. The presenter, one Nicolas Lucar, is normally pretty lapdog towards the Lima society and its governments, too. Youtube link here

American Pharoah

I hope the Triple Crown goes to American Pharoah, it's been way too long. But win or lose, he won't do it in two minutes and twenty-four seconds.


The day when Ron Turcotte decided to show the whole horse. Forty-two years on, it's still hard to believe. 

So how's your uranium call going this year, permabull?

Is it the normal flatulent sales-pitch nonsense that's quickly proven wrong?




Or is it like IKN's from the late December 2014 predictions for the year?

3) Uranium will go nowhere again. We're in the high $30s today, it could fluctuate up into a 4-handle, down through to the 2s, but the prediction is to watch it flatline in general terms. Uranium's going the way of the buggy whip, the world has moved on from the fallacy of "near limitless/near free energy" and knows how expensive these things are to decom, the type of cost that's built into projections by serious countries (China an obvious exception to that category). 

Chart of the day is...

...gold, hourlies:


Whither goest thou, American money, in thy shiny car at night?


5/17/15

The IKN Weekly, out now


mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm...pi

IKN314 has just been sent to subscribers. 31 pages and 13,500 words, most of them...wait for it...spelled...yes indeed you've guessed, spelled correctly! Oh hah hah.

Canadian capital markets quiz question (answer at the bottom)

Question: What do the following companies (presented in alphabetical order) have in common?

Advanced Explorations Inc.
Alhambra Resources Ltd.
American Natural Energy Corporation
American Oil & Gas Inc.
AMSECO EXPLORATION LTD.
Angus Mining Inc.
Aqua-Pure Ventures Inc.
Birch Lake Energy Inc.
Blue Zen Memorial Parks Inc.
Brigadier Gold Limited
Cadan Resources Corporation
CanAm Coal Corp.
Changfeng Energy Inc.
Charlotte Resources Ltd.
Copper Point Mining Corp.
Cosigo Resources Ltd.
Crimson Bioenergy Ltd.
Cygam Energy Inc.
Dealnet Capital Corp.
Desmarais Energy Corporation
Ditem Explorations Inc.
DOT Resources Ltd.
Enssolutions Group Inc.
Fletcher Nickel Inc.
Geovic Mining Corp.
Global Key Investment Limited
Goldex Resources Corporation
Hudson River Minerals Ltd.
Hunter Bay Minerals plc
Immunall Science Inc.
International Millennium Mining Corp.
Jaguar Resources Inc.
Jetcom Inc.
Josephine Mining Corp.
Leader Energy Services Ltd.
Lovitt Resources Inc.
Matrix Asset Management Inc.
ME Resource Corp.
Microplanet Technology Corp.
Mobi724 Global Solutions Inc.
Nextraction Energy Corp.
Noble Iron Inc
NX Phase Capital Inc.
Pacific Bay Minerals Ltd.
Palliser Oil & Gas Corporation
PETRO VIKING ENERGY INC.
Phoenix Metals Corporation
Pivot Pharmaceuticals Inc. 
Premium Exploration Inc.
QSolar Limited
Quattro Exploration and Production Ltd.
RB Energy Inc
Redwater Energy Corp.
Regent Ventures Ltd.
Rosehearty Energy Inc.
Sendero Mining Corp
Silcom Systems Inc.
Stealth Ventures Inc
Stealth Ventures Ltd.
Stratabound Minerals Corp.
SweetrLife Technologies Inc.
Titus Energy Corp.
TrinCan Capital Corp.
Victory Mountain Ventures Ltd.
Winchester Minerals and Gold Exploration Ltd.
Xemplar Energy Corp.
Zone Resources Inc.


Answer: They've all had a Cease Trade Order (CTO) imposed on them by the BCSC in the last ten days. Overall, I'd say that's a pretty good sign.