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9/12/15

How internet censorship works, IKN edition

I'm now receiving mails from a certain brokerage based in Canada, telling me that they are no longer allowed to read this blog and its access has been blocked by the brokerage servers.

Just so you know.

9/11/15

The Friday OT: Messi is a dog

What you need to do is access the video on Youtube right here, then those of you who prefer English can click the "CC" box on the bottom right of the frame and read the (quality translation) subtitles.

"Messi Is A Dog" is for all of us who love Association Football. And for those of you who'd like to know why so many people around the world love Association Football. The most marvellous 10 minutes about the most beautiful exponent of the Beautiful Game I know. Enjoy

A bit of standard trolling

Standard Tolling (TON.v) is one of those new start-up toll milling companies in Peru that plans to take ore produced by local small-scale miners and become their processor of choice, buying the rock from the locals, producing gold and making its cash from the difference. In short, the Dynacor Gold (DNG.to) model, except that Standard Tolling (TON.v) is one of the very few of these toll mill start-ups that's going to the North of Peru rather than the coastal South.

It's also been pumped by several junior newsletter writers, which means the news today hasn't gone down very well at all with that particular band of sheep:

White Rock, British Columbia (FSCwire) - Standard Tolling Corp. (TSX-V: TON, Frankfurt: GA0, “Standard Tolling” or the “Company”) announces that it has filed legal action with the District Attorney in the Department of La Libertad, Peru to prosecute the parties involved in the mindless destruction of Company property at the entrance of its gold plant on September 2, 2015.  The damage was caused by a farmer, who convinced the local magistrate to issue a civil order against the Company for allegedly blocking a public access way, a completely untrue allegation.  At the same time the civil order was issued, and against the instructions of the authorities, the perpetrator began destroying civil works and company property adjacent to the public road using two large front-end loaders.  Although the authorities were present for the attack, they failed to uphold their duties as public officials and did nothing to stop the attack.  Consequently, the Company will use the compelling evidence it has assembled to pursue financial restitution for all damages and lost business and will seek criminal charges through the integrity of the Peruvian judicial system.  The Company has shared the matter with regional and central authorities, who support a higher standard for public officials.
 
Other than the entrance, the processing plant was untouched.  The economic loss to the Company’s investment was limited and the truck scale, being the most valuable piece of equipment damaged, only requires minor repair.  In the meantime, portable scales are being used and ore purchase operations have re-commenced. The entrance and the tolling area of the plant have been redesigned and the truck scale will be moved to another area within the property.
 
The Company appreciates the support of its employees during this ordeal. The Company will update its’ shareholders with any further developments.

And when reading that, remember the IKN First Law of Junior Mining NRs: Anytime a mining company feels obliged to tell you about something that isn't shiny and wonderful and great and wrapped up in wholly positive prose and wording, things must be very bad indeed.

But there are two more things to add:

1) The stock price has been hit this week, but as the event in question happened on September 2nd the company managed to keep things quiet. I don't mind admitting that I hadn't heard anything on the mining grapevine (though will say I haven't been looking hard, what with one thing and another in my real world).

2) I don't own this one and haven't pulled the trigger, but I do quite like it and have checked out the company, met the people etc. In the toll milling sub-universe, it's the one that's most attracted me so far therefore this news event may turn out to be a buying opportunity. We'll see on that.





9/10/15

Volumes

The apathy the world has for mining stocks is most evident via the traded volumes, rather than price moves. Nobody cares outside the insular world of corporate mining and frankly, after watching the way mining executives have treated the world of capital markets these last few years, I can't blame them.

And yes, I'm busy again outside the cyberworld and there won't be much on the blog. Ongoing computer fixings, plus meetings. Talk amongst yourselves.

UPDATE: Regular and mailpal MP writes...
I was thinking the exact same thing this morning. I wouldn't want to be a forced seller here, that is for sure. On the other hand, I believe that small-ish stink bids have a chance of getting filled thereby yielding incredible deals when things turn around. I'm certainly not chasing anything, though...

9/9/15

Drop the Pylot

Capstone Mining's (CS.to) news release has the quote of the day. Bold-type by IKN:

Suspension of Santo Domingo Project
Capstone will discontinue all work on its Santo Domingo project, and will downsize the Santiago and Diego de Almagro offices in Chile . The previously communicated 2015 budget of $19.4 million will be reduced by $2.4 million (including severance costs) on the basis of Capstone's 70% ownership. In 2016 and beyond, holding and community relations costs are expected to be in the range of $2 million annually on a 100% basis. Of the 31 employees at Santo Domingo , 23 positions are affected and a one-time restructuring charge of approximately $3.2 million on a 100% basis will be expensed in the third quarter.
"While we continue to believe that Santo Domingo is an excellent project, a number of factors, including uncertainty over the future direction of copper prices and our financing capacity for the project, make capital preservation a priority at this time," continued Mr. Pylot. "In this environment, we believe the most prudent course of action is to put the project and completion of the updated Feasibility Study on hold, while maintaining the optionality for future development when conditions improve."

Hey, y'think the fact that CS.to paid $725m four years ago for a project with marginal economics using $2.85/lb Cu and $85/t Fe has anything to do with the fact Darren Pylot still believes Santo Domingo is an excellent project?

CS.to's entire market cap is now a third of the price it paid for Santo Domingo. Funny old world.

Peruvian Precious Metals (PPX.v): And the AGM results?

What happens is that when some company or other catches my eye it kinda eats away at me and I start sniffing around. An example is Peruvian Precious Metals (PPX.v), as after the post on its very weird commission payments on private placements as seen last week I've been checking out its Reg. Filings. The funny thing here is that although the AGM was nearly two months ago, the results of the voting haven't been released by the company. 

You'd think they'd be keen on doing things the right way, and you'd also think that CIBC Mellon would be more diligent about disclosing things in the correct manner. So what's with the vote results guys, you going to file the numbers or will it take a phone call from the BCSC before you get round to it? 

It's almost as if they're trying to hide something...

MAG Silver (MAG.to) (MVG)

I really don't understand why MAG Silver has held so well compared to other silver plays:


Just about the only silver junior that's not lost ground compared to its underlying metal. I mean yeah I know the project is good, and Fresnillo, and thick wide veins and la la lah....but no way is it worth over CAD$600m in this market and Fresnillo isn't going to make an offer for anywhere near this ticket price. Obvious short.

The Torex Gold (TXG.to) blockade was lifted last night...

...which means of course that TXG is never going to have any problems ever again with the local community around its Medi Luna mine in Guerrero, Mexico. None at all. Ever again.

9/8/15

Vedanta (VEDL) (VED.L) and its rivers of acid in Zambia

UK mining company Vedanta Resources (VEDL) (VED.L) makes it to the pages of the BBC today. But not exactly in the way it'd most appreciate. Your juicy excerpt is this:

When I visited, I could smell and even taste the pollution.
The communities of Hippo Pool, Kakosa, Shimulala and Hellen say the Mushishima stream and the Kafue have become rivers of acid.
Hundreds of villagers who claim copper mining operations in the area have poisoned their water source and destroyed farmland are taking Zambia's biggest copper mine, Vedanta Resources Plc, to court.
Leaked documents, that the BBC has seen, appear to show that Vedanta Resources - through its Zambian based Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) - have been spilling sulphuric acid and other toxic chemicals into the water sources.
A whistle-blower, who worked for 15 years with KCM, alleges that since Vedanta bought the mine in 2004, corners have been cut to save the costs of running operations.

Whole thing here. Ah yeah, tell me again about all you bigboy responsible mining companies that don't need to be watched like hawks these days because everything you do is done with love and everybody wins. My thanks to reader 'B' for the headsup.

Chart of the day is...

...copper, hourlies:


Can't fault it for trying.

Mailbag on one Ricardo Goldman

This from reader "A" this morning. I haven't had time to check out the full bonafides on his message but it passes the smell test so I'm sticking it here for all to see:
Hey Otto;

Just so you don't feel all alone in the misfortunes of the bullshit of the stock market.
My Argentinian stockbroker in Miami, ended up declaring his firm with lack of liquidity, and therefore it's investors with some kind of equity left, cannot withdraw any funds, no matter if we've made money or we lost equity. The firm " has halted all trading operations due to lack of liquidity". Believe it or not the broker has pooled all the monies from all traders probably to make a living out of his operation.
Just if you hear the name Ricardo Goldman, DaytradeYa! Or American Capital group LLC. in your cyberspace corner, you know what this scumbag has been doing all along, placing himself amongst the most respected traitors of the Latin investing community in Miami.
I though this only happens in Banana Republics, but now let's see how the SEC reacts.
He has had 2 previous violations with them , and still doing business as usual

Thanks, A

Torex (TXG.to): What? Political risk in Guerrero? Surely not!

Here and here explain what happened at the Torex Gold (TXG.to) mine yesterday. All good fun. Here's a bit of translation:


Management and workers at the Media Luna mine have been held hostage since yesterday by inhabitants of the Nuevo Balsas community, Cocula municipality, who are protesting about the pollution generated by the Canadian company in the Balsas River.

But hey...don't worry 'bout it...your broker said there wouldn't be any more trouble there...probably nothing, right?

9/7/15

The big surprise in the Guatemala elections isn't Jimmy Morales...

..it's that Sandra Torres of UNE has this evening moved into second spot, beating out the fast-fading Manuel Baldizón for the other place in the second round run-off. Here's a screenshot of the La Prensa Libre realtime tracker as of about seven minutes ago:



So it looks like Jimmy Morales (came out of nowhere) to face Sandra Torres to decide the next President of Guatemala. And a stunning collapse from Baldizón, who was a shoo-in for the job a quarter ago with polls even predicting he could win it all in round one (50% + 1 vote). The La Linea scandal has hit him almost as hard as Otto Pérez Molina.

Peru copper production moves up big (at last)

It was supposed to be hitting new heights this time last year, but the delayed ramp-up of Toromocho and various glitches in other larger operations have seen Peru's copper production monthlies largely flatline.

Not any more: Toromocho is starting to work as planned, Constancia has kicked in, the other big ones have made their quotas and the result is...



...a new record in copper production in Peru in July 2015 by a nautical mile, with the data published by Peru's Mining Ministry (MEM today. Expect plenty more months like this one to come. And that's supply sewn up, it's a good job that demand hasn't slackened in rece....oh, wait.

Computer meltdown

The quickest post (from the reserve laptop) to say that IKN is having a major problem with its Head Office computation machine. It may take a while to fix.

9/6/15

For those of you who want the follow the Guatemala election count...

...Prensa Libre has a fast-updating vote count graphic at the top of its front page, right here. They're also doing a live link to the Prensa TV election night desk, for those of you versed in the tongue of Cervantes.

It's still early days and the count looks like a slow one, but after 3.8% of the total votes counted Jimmy Morales (FCN) has 26%, Manuel Baldizón (LIDER) is on 21% and Sandra Torres (UNE) is going to miss out on the second round run-off because she's in third on 17%.

But I stress, 4% of the total vote is nobody's idea of a sample, long way to go yet. Follow the numbers here.

UPDATE: It's beginning to shape up: 12% of votes counted, here's a screenshot:

The IKN Weekly, out now




IKN330 has just been sent to subscribers. Numbercrunching on New Gold (NGD), basically.

Minera IRL (MIRL.L) (IRL.to): The community trouble now affecting Corihuarmi as well

The complete ineptitude of Daryl Hodges's lackeys shows up once again. Not content with completely screwing up the community relations at the company's flagship at Ollachea (plenty of past coverage on that one) in the South of Peru, this weekend the local community around the company's small working gold mine Corihuarmi (central Peru) has taken over the mine, blockaded themselves in and all production and work has come to a halt. 

The locals are demanding payments due to them that are undelivered since Team Hodges snatched control of the company away from people who actually know how to run a company in Peru.

Police are on their way to the mine now and we can only hope the situation doesn't turn violent.

UPDATE: News story on the blockade, form Peru's El Correo dated September 6th 2015 (today):



How The IKN Weekly is written

Every darned week:



From this article out today, which has more of the same, is fun and managed to keep me distracted (from writing up the Weekly) for around five minutes. Or eight if you include the writing of this post.