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...is that of Tom Tomorrow at This Modern World. It's a two-parter this year as well, so double your fun.
Shortcut to the poll results and presentation here (pt 1) and here (pt 2)
- All five regional countries score pretty well, with the relaxed dudettes and dudes in Colombia topping LatAm at 71% net happiness and even the notoriously grumpy Peru making the top 20 worldwide.
- Strange that Mexico wasn't included, too big a country not to be listed, methinks.
- Seriously, what do they put in the water in Nigeria?
- Oh look, The world's richest country languishes at 33%. What's that saying about money and happiness again?
...one that tracks the year-to-date share price performance of the "Cardero Group" companies:
UPDATE: Aaaaaaaaaand, we're back. It took just over an hour but supply is now being restored, region by region. Not so bad and definitely at the "15 minutes" end of our estimated time window. By the way, the apparent reason for the mass outage was a lightning bolt direct hit on the San Gaban power station in the mountains of the Puno region, which is understandable as the sierra rainy season is now upon us and in Puno the rains invariably come via electrical storms. All well that ends well, though.
- Silly optioning-in deal on some precious metals project somewhere (often in US or Mexico, in this case the USA).
- Recent change of sector for the company (in this case NSRS.ob was an O&G play, now suddenly into hard rock mining).
- Pitifully small staff roster (in this case, the only listed manager or director is a scumbag named Harry Lappa).
- No assets and a negative working capital (in this case for example, as at the last quarterly NSRS had $16 in cash at the bank...yes, that says sixteen dollars and zero cents).
- Recent share count swindle (in this case, NSRS decided that having 348m shares outstanding just wasn't enough and decided to double the count to 696m shares).
- Bullshit debt facility, in this case an eventual $1m drawdown (that will never happen) with a Panama registered front for some band of scammers called Kazuo.
UPDATE: The moment this post was published marked the day's high price in NSRS.ob, with the stock now (about 45 minutes later) trading at 28c. Almost certainly a coincidence....
disclosure: no position of any sort in this worthless junk and it'll definitely stay that way.
IKN back and, sadly, it's not a joke.
- Fernando Lugo of Paraguay is a left wing President in South America. He was recently diagnosed with cancer.
- Hugo Chávez of Venezuela is a left wing President in South America. He was recently diagnosed with cancer.
- Lula da Silva of Brazil was until last year a left wing President in South America. He was recently diagnosed with cancer.
- Dilma Rousseff of Brazil is a left wing President in South America. She went through a bout of cancer recently and is currently in remission.
- Cristina Fernandez is a left wing President in South America. She was very recently (i.e. it came to light yesterday) diagnosed with cancer.
- Cristina's husband, Nestor, was a left wing President in South America and died of a heart attack less than a year before most analysts and commentators in Argentina were confidently predicting his return to the Presidency this year. On his death, Cristina stepped up and was re-elected.
"In 1975, during the Church Committee hearings, the existence of a secret assassination weapon came to light."
"Can you give a person cancer"
"The answer to the question - Can you give a person cancer - is yes. After nearly 80 years of research and development there is now a way to simulate a real heart attack and to give a healthy person cancer"
UPDATE: Reader 'JM' reminds your author that Jack Layton, charismatic head of Canada's left wing NDP party, died of cancer on August 22nd this year.
UPDATE 2: Thank you to those who have sent in links to today's story about Chávez suggesting that the US is behind the cancer outbreak in local Presidents. Four things to say:
1) You can stop sending me those links, guys. Fact is I read it in Spanish before you read it in English, ok?
2) It's true that this post was up before Chávez said his thing. However, this does not mean that Hugo is a regular reader round here. Fun thought, though.
3) Here's the link to the CNN EngLang version, which is now getting repeated in other places.
4) This is the answer I sent to the first five people who sent me the link. I wrote it to the first one and then just pasted it to the others.
Well yeah, CNN's note is par for the course for outsiders looking in. Y'know, it might be a little less Pavlovian to reflect that Chavez hasn't survived as long as he has by being a stupid politico. And perhaps....hey just perhaps....there's a deeper reason why he says the things he says sometimes (not just this example). Oooh, i dunno, maybe such as keeping his core support intact for a date he has with the ballot box on October 7th. Fact is, he doesn't care two hoots what foreign chatter or the Venezuelan middle/upper class say about him when he comes out with these things. His mind is on other matters.
Menem, Chavez, Fujimori, Uribe, Clinton. It doesn't matter what you think of their different brands of politics but they have one thing in common: all political animals. But hey, maybe I'm wrong and Chavez is just an idiot that's been lucky to stay in power all this time.
1) Interesting to note that in The USA, the public is as well-trained as its army.2) Mexico surprises me, frankly.3) Chile trusts something that uses guns and gets heaps of metals generated cash to work with. This does not surprise.4) At least Peru is true to form on this question. They trust nobody.5) And what on earth could Argentines have against State run armed forces? Oh yeah...that small matter of 30,000 disappeared in the 70s...
We also know from official reports that the cancer has (apparently) not spread to other parts of her body, that CFK will be hospitalized for between 48 and 72 hours, though she will be taking medical leave until January 24th. In that time, Veep Amado Boudou will replace her as Head of State.
So what is it with being President of a South American nation that makes you susceptible to cancer all of a sudden? Four in one year is just bizarre.
UPDATE: Official Presidential communique here
PS: Yes, GPL is the same stock pumped non-stop by arch scumbag Thom Calandra and hired by GPL to do so, understandably
PPS: Yes, GPL is the same company that tries legalistic bullyboy schemes to try and stop facts from coming to light about its operations. And by the way, since standing up to the bullies we still haven't heard a peep out of them...missing ya already, Kaare :-)
If you know it already, sit back and enjoy. If it's your first time, get ready for a festive treat.
Wishing all readers a very merry Christmas.
Story here, translation below.
Buenos Aires (Agencies): A woman suffered various injuries and traumas after falling from the second floor window of a building located in the Argentine province of Salta.
The injured person, identified as Yesica Tarifa, 23, was found injured and unable to move on the sidewalk. Paramedics took her to a nearby hospital where she was admitted with a fractured tibia and collar bone.
According to reports, before falling from the window the young woman was having sexual relations with Sebastián Alberto Madrazo, 27, lead singer of the folklore group Los Teuco, in an apartment in the building. Apparently when he heard his wife open the door to the apartment, and to avoid his infidelity being discovered, Madrazo grabbed the girl and threw her half naked out the window.
Argentine Police later detained the singer, who admitted that she was the girl he threw out the window due to his desperation about not being discovered by his wife, who is also a friend of the girl.
This one for Peter K:
1) Sorry, but wasn't the Piñera gov't the right wing one and the Humala gov't the bunch of raging lefties?
2) Gold is an asset class, copper isn't.
3) So tell me again, Mister Chilean Central Banker, how free-floating of a currency is the only possible way and that managing a country forex never works.
Isn't this fun?
Disclosure: long BCM, position opened Nov '11 at $4.40. Staying long til this silliness is over, too.
Maybe you can get your head wrapped around this, but it makes my head hurt!
Casey's Energy letter had an end of year wrap-up, and some of the percentage losses seemed a bit suspect. Let's pick an easy target out of the many losers: RPG.
Recommended a couple years ago at 3.00, so, of course, it's about a 90% loss. But wait! A few months ago they re-recommend it at 0.55. So anybody who bought that second tranche lost about 50% of that investment as well. But for Casey, there's a silver lining - by combining those two losses, they get to report a 64% loss on the total position.
I can just imagine Casey subscribers thinking, "Boy, it's a good thing I averaged down on RPG - I only lost 64% of my money instead of 93%!"
Maybe that's a legitimate way to report the outcome of a couple trades, but it sure doesn't seem to accurately reflect the consequences of the RPG recommendations. What do you think - shady reporting or just one of the ways math can be counter-intuitive?
The region-wide average forecast was 4%, it's now 3.7%
Time for a resource update or two.
Copper Cancelled Warrants Up in Asia +7300t Overnight. Yesterday we noted that copper inventories in Asia (particularly LME Asia) are nearing 5 year lows and the boost to cancelled warrants indicates LME Asia inventories are heading even lower. Note there is only 36,825t in LME Asia at present. Copper Premiums in China continue to hold up ($110 to $135/t) despite we are on the forefront of a long Holiday period. China always slows down before the Chinese New Year and in 2012 it is the earliest it has been/or will be for the next decade. So the slowness you would normally see in January is happening this year around now. Very interesting to see Copper fundamentals hold up despite this - Scotia Mining Sales thinks February will prove to be a key month that should translate to a pick-up in seasonal copper demand and given the low inventories - a looming supply squeeze should translate to higher copper prices.
...the six month price chart for Regulus Resources (REG.v)
Today I learned a new (well, new for me anyway) expression and it comes from Japan, apparently.
UPDATE: The death of Heyn, aged just 33, has apparently brought the Mercosur summit to a premature close. The official agenda has just been changed to "no further business".
UPDATE 2: The lightning fast Argentina media is now supplying heaps of background on Heyn. Amongst other things, we know he was a member of the board of directors of Alu maker Aluar, lived with his girlfriend in Buenos Aires, was a fitness/jogging fan, had a reputation for hard-work and job dedication, was considered one of the brightest lights of the 'La Cámpora' Kirchner youth movement...and that his father attempted suicide 10 years ago due to depression after seeing his manufacturing business fall apart during the crisis at that time. For Spanish language coverage of this breaking story, here's as good a link as any.
UPDATE 3: He was hanged by his own belt, found by hotel staff on opening his room after calls from fellow delegates that morning were left unanswered, the mandatory autopsy has found no signs of violence on the body, no reason to suspect any foul play and the body has now been released "to the disposition of family members" which means as far as the police are concerned it's case closed.
Apart from that, all good. Bejeepers this market was due a little light relief. Ho ho ho.
Q: But government projections indicated growth of between 5% and 6% for 2012 and the years that follow. What's your opinion?
Walter Mendoza: "Even in an optimistic scenario those projections will have to be cut back, I'd say to between 3% and 4% for the years 2011 to 2015. Meanwhile it's more difficult to estimate in a pessimistic scenario, but I'd say between 1% and 3%. Therefore I see a complicated period for President Humala because when growth rates drop, various problems appear."
|Finest silk – purest gold|
Baja Mining (BAJ.to) is worth watching today. Here's the link, here's how the NR starts.
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire -12/19/11)- Baja Mining Corp. ("Baja") (TSX: BAJ.TO - News)(OTCQX: BAJFF.PK - News) today announced that it has received a letter dated December 16, 2011 from Mount Kellett Master Fund II A LP of New York ("Mt. Kellett"), described as a registered shareholder of 19.9% of Baja's shares.
Mt. Kellett says it is requisitioning a special meeting at which shareholders will be asked to approve the appointment of two Mt. Kellett nominees to the Board, either by replacing two incumbent Baja directors or by increasing the number of Baja directors to nine from seven. The requisition letter also proposes to put before the meeting certain non-binding resolutions.
The Company is considering this correspondence and yada yada continues here
...silver versus gold, 2011 year to date, using the proxies SLV and GLD.
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA, Dec 18, 2011 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) -- Eldorado Gold Corporation (the "Company" or "Eldorado")today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement (the "Arrangement Agreement") with European Goldfields Limited ("European Goldfields") pursuant to which Eldorado has agreed to acquire all of the issued and outstanding common shares of European Goldfields by way of a plan of arrangement (the "Arrangement") under the Yukon Business Corporations Act.European Goldfields is a precious metals development company with attributable gold reserves of 9.2 million ounces and multi-stage assets located in Greece, Romania and Turkey. The company currently operates the Stratoni mine in Greece and is developing the Skouries and Olympias projects in Greece and the Certej project in Romania. European Goldfields is also partnered with Aktor SA, the largest construction company in Greece.Under the Arrangement, shareholders of European Goldfields will receive 0.85 Eldorado shares and C$0.0001 in cash per European Goldfields share (the "Exchange Ratio"). Each outstanding option of European Goldfields shall be exchanged for options of Eldorado that will entitle the holder to receive, upon the exercise thereof, Eldorado shares based upon the Exchange Ratio and otherwise on the same terms and conditions as in the original European Goldfields option. The total transaction value is approximately C$2.5 billion.Eldorado's offer represents continues here
IKN is a happy Blogger user.
Seen the pattern yet? Yeah, me too...
...and the way U2 rocks a hall like no other band.
Oh yeah, one more random thing on my mind this morning to mention. This 3 month chart comparing RIO.v to GLD.
HAMBURG Dec 16 (Reuters) - Germany's Aurubis , Europe's biggest copper producer, has agreed long-term copper treatment and refining charges (TC/RCs) for 2012 of $63.50 a tonne and 6.35 cents a pound, up 12.4 percent on 2011 deals, sources close to the company said on Friday.
This means Aurubis has matched the higher TC/RCs for 2012 reached in early December by Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold .
TC/RCs are paid by miners to smelters to refine concentrate into metal and are a key part of the global copper industry's income. Increases are being sought as smelters believe demand for metal and mining output will continue to rise in 2012.
There was still doubt in past days whether the Freeport level would be accepted as a benchmark for 2012.
Chinese copper smelters were still seeking to convince BHP Billiton , the majority owner of the world's biggest copper mine, to (continues here)
The gold/Silver ratio, three year timescale:
- The influences have been strictly monetary, with the pure asset metal and the asset/industrial metal affected more or less equally.
- It's been a waste of time following this ratio chart recently.
This is what they said:
CONCORD, NH, Dec. 15, 2011 /CNW/ - Jaguar Mining Inc. ("Jaguar" or the "Company") (TSX: JAG) (NYSE: JAG) today provided an update on the strategic review process that it previously announced was initiated by its Board of Directors on November 16, 2011.
The Board has appointed a Special Committee comprised solely of independent directors to review and evaluate any proposals received as part of the strategic review process and to assess whether any such proposal may be more desirable than the continued operation of the Company on a stand-alone basis, and to make recommendations to the Board thereon. The Special Committee is chaired by Gil Clausen and is comprised of Mr. Clausen, Gary German and John Andrews.The Company has retained JP Morgan Securities LLC as its financial advisor and Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP as legal counsel to assist the Board and the Special Committee.Over the past several weeks, through JP Morgan, the Company has solicited interest regarding a potential change of control or merger transaction with the Company.Any proposal that may be received will be assessed relative to the inherent value of the Company's unique asset portfolio in order to determine the most effective means of delivering value to the shareholders of Jaguar. There is no assurance that this strategic review process will result in a change of control or merger transaction."For a number of months Jaguar's share price has been disconnected from the inherent value of the Company's unique asset portfolio," said Gary German, Chairman of the Board. "The Special Committee has been formed to explore alternatives. Our Board will not support a transaction that does not deliver adequate value to our shareholders."The Board intends to provide a further update to shareholders as circumstances warrant, likely in early 2012.
And this is what it means:
- was at the centre of the clustafark called Ascendant Copper in Ecuador
- and then at the centre of the clustafark called Mercer Gold in Colombia
- and is then hired by a company that makes a point of NOT mentioning the names of companies in Mr Stonehouse's background in the NR, preferring to talk in general terms about his years of experience in The Americas and his fluent Spanish
TORONTO, Dec. 15, 2011 /CNW/ - Scorpio Mining Corporation (TSX: SPM) ("Scorpio" or the "Corporation") has appointed James M. Stonehouse as the Corporation's Vice President of Exploration, based in Mexico, effective January 3, 2012.
Mr. Stonehouse holds an M.A. in Geology from Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire. He is a professional and highly skilled geologist with over 30 years of experience in exploration, primarily focused in the Americas and on precious and base metal deposits. He is fluent in Spanish and has successfully led multiple teams through grass roots exploration to discovery stage, resource evaluation, feasibility study and development. His ability to recognize and re-evaluate geological settings and design successful exploration programs has resulted in significant discoveries that have increased resources and added satellite ore deposits to existing operations. Mr. Stonehouse is experienced in managing all aspects of exploration and resource development, including turnaround projects that brought sub-valued assets to economic status and production.Mr. Stonehouse is a registered member of SME and a registered Geoscientist in the State of California, and is a Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101.Parviz Farsangi, President and CEO of the Corporation, commented: "We are delighted to have James as part our dedicated team as Scorpio moves forward with its plans for growth. His extensive experience and expertise will be of great value to the Corporation as we continue to explore, develop and expand our portfolio of projects in the Cosalá and Parral Districts of Mexico.
Moral of the story: Don't let a miner cook you lunch. From RPP news this morning (your author translates):
A total of 140 employees working for the mining services company JJC, contracted to the Chinalco mining company in the city of La Oroya, province of Yauli (Junín region), were poisoned after eating a communal lunch* accompanied by strawberry juice.
Due to stomach pains and vomiting, the employees were evacuated at first to the local health outpost in Morococha, but the severity of some cases caused their transfer to the hospital (45 people) and health centre (10 people) at La Oroya.
Pedro Rau Lavado, director of the Essalud Hospital, said that the condition of all patients was stable and the nauseas, colic and vomiting was caused by food poisoning.
"Many of them are on intravenous saline drip, but fortunately everything is now under control. The discharge of each patient depends on their individual evolution", he said.
*called "pachamanca" and consisting of meats cooked in an underground pit covered in earth, much the same style as a Hawaiian luau.
...an update on our 2011 Small Silvers Sweepstakes with just two weeks to go:
By the way, apparently some problems with Google Mail this morning, just so you know.