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Brent Cook does BNN's Market Call on Wednesday March 4th

You can mail in or phone in or Twitter in or whatever in your questions, too. So it'd be great if you ask him about Continental Gold (, Gran Colombia Gold (, Barkerville Gold (BGM.v), International Tower Hill (, Corvus Gold (KOR.v), Exeter Resources ( or Pretium Resources ( , but he'll probably end up talking about Mirasol and Almaden as usual.

No worries, whatever he comes up with is worth watching. Cook's a rare thing in the mining sector; he's honest. Which still confuses the hell out of most people when they hear him talking.

Troll Hunters

This looks particularly promising. Excerpt here:

Public humiliation is never more entertaining than when it’s justified. That probably explains the success of Swedish TV showTrolljägarna, or Troll Hunters. It follows journalist Robert Aschberg as he tracks down so-called “trolls” who have posted hate speech in social forums or abused individuals online and then confronts them on-camera. 
The entertainment value is evident from the show’s first episode (and in its spread to neighboring Norway, Denmark, and Holland with a similar production being considered in the UK, according to Henrik Stenlund, former CEO of production company Strix Television). When Alexander, 20, walks across a parking lot in Sweden to greet Aschberg and his TV crew, the young man thinks they’re about to discuss a potential new show. 
But Aschberg is there to confront Alexander with a self-posted Facebook video in which he aggressively rants against a young woman who has openly talked about being raped. In the video, which provoked a storm of abusive comments directed at the young woman, he calls her a liar, along with various other words that would have likely been bleeped on American TV. All of it is documented in the printed transcript that Aschberg pulls out and starts reading. 
Alexander, appearing baffled and confused, looks from the transcript to the camera, denying that those words were his. But Aschberg keeps pressing, and Alexander’s reactions start shifting between denial and justification. “Well, calling an innocent person a whore is over the line… But if she is a whore, then I guess it’s okay,” says Alexander, whose Facebook page, Hult Hatar, or Hult hates, is dedicated to videos in which he spews vitriol against anyone with whom he disagrees. The page had about 30,000 likes when the show was recorded. 
By the end of the encounter, Aschberg hands the man a note stating that he is legally bound to pay approximately $1,200 in damages to the woman within three weeks.

Oh good, it's Fraud Prevention Month in Canada

Which may mean the other eleven are Fraud Encouragement Months. 

Cynical? Moi?

Anyway, quips aside this deserves a few more eyeballs so here's the BCSC on Fraud Prevention Month link and here's a paste-out of the presser:

Be an informed investor: Check before you invest

March 2, 2015
Calgary – March is Fraud Prevention Month and the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) are encouraging Canadian investors to take the time to research investments before making important investing decisions. Before investing, the CSA recommends that investors follow these four easy steps:
  1. Check registration of the person or company selling or advising about securities. The CSA National Registration Search is a simple and free tool for investors to use to check registration.
  2. Check disciplinary history to find out if the person or company has broken regulatory rules in the past. It’s easy to do through the CSA cease trade orders database and the disciplined persons list.
  3. Check available tools and resources that the CSA has to offer to assist investors in learning how to protect themselves and their investments.
  4. Check the news and search online to see if there are any news releases or online information about the company or person.
“CSA investor education tools and resources can help Canadians become informed investors, which is one of the best defences against fraud,” said Bill Rice, Chair of the CSA and CEO of the Alberta Securities Commission. “The CSA is here to help investors protect their money and learn how to avoid investment fraud. It starts with a simple step: checking registration.”

The CSA would also like to remind investors to participate in Check Registration Day on Wednesday March 18 2015. Checking registration is easy and a great first step to becoming an informed investor. Investors who access the National Registration Search for the first time will be asked to complete a brief survey to help us make future improvements to this tool.

During Fraud Prevention Month, investors can follow tweets from @CSA_News for additional helpful tips and information on being a smart investor and fraud prevention.

The CSA, the council of securities regulators of Canada’s provinces and territories,
co-ordinates and harmonizes regulation for the Canadian capital markets. 

Mickeyman does PDAC, part one

Mickeyman over at The World Complex is somebody actually worth listening to (which separates him from the author of IKN, for just one example of the detritus that clutters up the mining chatt-o-world). Here's his first post on PDAC 2015, with photos and words and stuff.

I'll link up any future posts of his on PDAC 2015 as and when.

Columbus Exploration (CLX.v): A guy called Giustra scams retail investors

La plus ça change...

This NR from yesterday evening made me laugh out loud. In it we hear that Columbus Gold (CGT.v) is getting the Mogollon silver property from Columbus Exploration (CLX.v) in lieu of a near $450k debt owed. Follow the bouncing ball, people:

  • Back in 2007 CGT.v loaned some cash to CLX.v. The principle on the loan was paid back, but the interest wasn't. That was about $300k at the time.
  • Meanwhile, CGT does general accounting and book-keeping work for CLX.v and charges the smaller company $10k/month for the privilege. Nice work if you can get it.
  • All this time, the Mogollon property is valued at a tad over $2m. At this time it was under an option deal to a company called Santa Fe Silver.
  • Then in 2014 the deal with Santa Fe was changed and under the new deal, Santa Fe could buy Mogollon outright for a total of $1m cash ($50k down, then $950k cash by November 2014)
  • Over at CLX.v, the people...errrr....doing the books in the company (see above) decide to write down Mogollon to $450k value in the September 2014 financials, giving their specific reason as the new deal with Santa Fe.
  • (Did you get that? Agree to sell something for $1m and because of that state in your filings that it's only worth $450,000? No, I have no idea either, must be the wonders of science or something).
  • Then the Santa Fe option/purchase deal lapsed definitively.
  • And now CLX.v swaps the property that was valued at over $2m less than a year ago for a sub-$450k debt that was accrued on loan interest and services provided by the very company that's the new owner of the property.

And you may be shocked, shocked ah say!, to find out that the people running CGT.v are the same people who run CLX.v. Headed by a guy called Giustra. Now, where have I heard that name before? Darnit....where...tip of my tongue...just can't seem to....

Another round of retail shareholder back passage love process and subsequent bleeding complete. Enjoy your Tuesday.

In which the Wall Street Journal asks Otto Rock for advice on the Apple iWatch

You people out there are mad. A little story of how things snowball coming up.

So last week Ralph Rushton of Focus Ventures (FCV.v) mails me to show me a link to a very, very stupid story about how Apple will apparently need one third of the world's mined gold per year for its new gold iWatch. It was total BS and by way of reply (which took about five minutes of searching for the numbers, part of which you see below) I did a bit of calculation to get to just over 9 tonnes instead of the incredibly stupid 746 tonnes estimate being made by morons who like hits on their articles more than facts.

As it happens Ralph sent our mail exchange thoughts to a friend of his who works at a shop called Ambrian in London UK. Fair enough. And Ambrian used the exchange and mentioned my name in the piece sent to clients as part of their own debunking. Also not a problem.

Here's the point---> This morning i have the freakin' Wall Street Journal on my ass, wanting to know all about the iWatch! Here below is the mail from the WSJ reporter:

Hi – I’m a reporter with The Wall Street Journal in London and we’re taking a look at the furore over Apple’s gold watch, and how much gold it will actually use. Apparently you’ve had some interesting comments on this topic, and I was wondering if you might be able to send me your thoughts.

Specifically the questions we’re addressing:

-          Will Apple need 746 tons of gold per year?
-          Will Apple be able to sell 1 million gold watches a month?
-          Do you envisage any impact on the gold market from the Apple watch?

Any help would be much appreciated!

The world's obsession with AAPL writ large...seriously, don't these people have anything better to do? Anyway, here's what I sent as a reply:


If by "interesting" you mean to sadsack Apple worshippers with nothing better to do than obsess over the gold mkt for the first time in their acne-strewn lives because Tim Cook has decided that shiny is the new future then yes, it's interesting.

-          Will Apple need 746 tons of gold per year?

No. See below.

-          Will Apple be able to sell 1 million gold watches a month?

My opinion is no, nowhere near. The price point differential between a "normal" steel case ring and a gold one is going to be enormous, while the difference in functionality is zero. This isn't the market. We already see how gold iPhones/gold plated Samsungs etc etc designed for the rich in mind are ignored. The thing with phone tech /handheld tech etc is that once you have the top thing (let's say for argument's sake the best iPhone) very very few people are interested in an enhanced status symbol, even the megarich (who have their Ferrari parked outside, something that will make a better statement any day).
The act of status here will not be to wear gold Apple, it will be to wear Apple. There's no need to waste money on the superficial appearance.
My best guess on gold iWatch...and i mean most optimistic guess, is 50,000 units a month if AAPL does meet its market guesses and shifts 5m/month in total. It may well be less for the gold version, but I stress that I have no idea for overall sales figures apart from "Apple will sell oodles".

-          Do you envisage any impact on the gold market from the Apple watch?

No, none The Rolex President Gold has:
  • Case ring 18.5 grams. Contains 13.875 grams of pure gold. 
  • Case back 7.21 grams. Contains 5.41 grams of pure gold. 
  • Bezel  5.3 grams. Contains 3.98 grams of pure gold
  • The bracelet 68.85 grams. Contains 51.64 grams of pure gold.
  • Total weight: 99.86 grams. Contains 74.905 grams of pure gold

That's a touch over* 2 1/2 ounces of gold. Have you seen one recently? You can see somebody wearing one of these things from two blocks away. If the Apple Gold gets to 15 g 24KT Au I'll be surprised. It's only going to be the case ring, perhaps the bezel. So, let's call it half an ounce and be generous. (note: one Troy ounce of gold has 31.1 grams).

Then "reports" have Apple estimating 20% of sales to be for the gold watch. On 5m units per month. Are these people out of their freakin brains? A million a month? If they shift 50k gold watches a month i'll be impressed (see above) but again to be generous, let's go for my 50k/month guess.

So, 293,000 ounces of gold a year. Or just over 9.1 metric tonnes. That's one medium sized gold mine's output in a year. Zero issues.

Best, O

*I now see my mistake, as that's a touch under, not over. Bite me

UPDATE: Iwnattos over at Market Narrative adds his tuppence worth on the subject because...well, because he's quite good at doing that. Read that slice of fruity prose right here.


Iwnattos does Rick Rule does BNN Market Call

Via a headsup from Iwnattos over at Market Narrative, your humble scribe notes that Rick Rule did BNN Market Call from PDAC this afternoon and you can watch the video too.

And hey wow, check out around minute 01:30 behind Rule's shoulder on the down escalator. That sure looks like Brent Legend Cook to me.

UPDATE: Not a bad Q&A in fact. Rule makes a particularly good point about how AISC and write-downs combine these days. Plus we get to see how well (ahem) his PDAC 2014 picks did over the year. You liked it at 3? Well you'll love it at 1.5!

Lies, damn lies and ____________", Chile/Peru mining edition (from IKN303)

Here's one and a bit pages from this week's edition of The IKN Weekly:

PS: Ugh, just noticed I used "i.e." when it should have been "e.g." Hate that mistake.