Author stories Proactiveinvestors Author stories RSS feed en Mon, 19 Feb 2018 13:35:40 +0000 Genera CMS (Proactiveinvestors) (Proactiveinvestors) Berenberg gives Softcat shares a boost, upgrading to 'buy' after raising its price target Mon, 19 Feb 2018 11:40:00 +0000 University study details exploration upside for Shefa Yamim in Israel Mon, 19 Feb 2018 08:21:00 +0000 McColl’s Retail shares fall as like-for-like sales disappoint after Palmer & Harvey collapse Mon, 19 Feb 2018 10:30:00 +0000 Frontier IP says first fundraising completed for portfolio company Molendotech Mon, 19 Feb 2018 07:30:00 +0000 Tullow Oil set for ‘rapid balance sheet strengthening’ - analyst Fri, 16 Feb 2018 12:04:00 +0000 Balfour Beatty joint venture secures US$1.95bln Los Angeles International Airport contract Fri, 16 Feb 2018 16:05:00 +0000 Galantas Gold says Northern Ireland Court of Appeal has completed hearing stage of planning appeal Fri, 16 Feb 2018 07:20:00 +0000 Altona Energy chief brings dose of pragmatism to Arckaringa coal project Thu, 15 Feb 2018 15:04:00 +0000 The People’s Operator shares plunge following disappointing trading update Thu, 15 Feb 2018 12:50:00 +0000 Stadium Group shares jump over 40% higher on agreed takeover by TT Electronics Thu, 15 Feb 2018 09:20:00 +0000 Big markets and even bigger ambitions for concierge group Ten Lifestyle Group PLC Ten Lifestyle Group plc (LON:TENG) CEO Alex Cheatle tells Proactive why this concierge group is THE premium lifestyle and travel platform for investors to watch.

A major new deal with Coutts Bank has added yet more high net worth individuals to their impressive list of service users (numbering tens of millions globally) which Alex intends to capitalise on fully going forward.

Ten provides unique, bespoke and trusted concierge services to the world's wealthy as part of a core offering from private banks, retail banks, premium payment cards providers and luxury brands whose customers then become Ten members.

For more visit: 

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 13:50:00 +0000
Drill down in to Kennedy Ventures PLC's tantalum mining ambitions Kennedy Ventures plc (LON:KENV) CEO Larry Johnson is a mining expert who sits in a class of his own...he's also a visionary...and he rides a Harley when he visits his tantalum mine. How does that help you take a position? Well, it gives you an idea of the kind of dynamic leadership this company is flourishing under...not to mention the plans Larry has in mind for 2018/19.

An investing company listed on AIM, Kennedy Ventures is focussed on opportunities principally, but not exclusively in the resources and energy sectors. The tantalum mine project is located in Namibia and Kennedy has a world class mystery customer which they can't tell Proactive about but which does guarantee they are working with 'top deck' end users.

Wed, 06 Dec 2017 08:51:00 +0000
Markets shrug off N Korea tensions – Core Finance It is business as usual for the markets as traders shrug-off the tensions in the Korean Peninsula and refocus on economics.
Watch presenter Matt Brown and Core London CEO Nick Batsford discuss the rebound in the risk assets and the outlook for Real Good PLC, WH Smith.

Wed, 30 Aug 2017 11:40:00 +0100
Capital Network: Fahad Changazi highlights 'attractive' VinaCapital Vietnam Opportunity Fund Capital Network's financial services analyst Fahad Changazi discusses the market opportunity for VinaCapital Vietnam Opportunity Fund Ltd (LON:VOF).

Fri, 31 Mar 2017 15:16:00 +0100
Allergy Therapeutics 'confident in the future of the business' Nick Wykeman, finance director for Allergy Therapeutics plc (LON:AGY) runs Proactive through the company's latest half year results.

Revenue rose 39% to £40.4mln from £29.0mln in the second half of 2015, helped by favourable exchange rate movements. Stripping out currency fluctuations, the increase was still an impressive 18%.

Wed, 29 Mar 2017 15:27:00 +0100
Brockham drill results 'outstanding and extraordinary' says David Lenigas David Lenigas, oil and gas commentator and executive chairman of Doriemus Energy plc (LON:DOR) talks over the positive update from Angus today on its Brockham re-entry oil well in Surrey.
The former chairman of UKOG said: "When the Horse Hill flowed at a record flow rate for an onshore well in the UK, it shut quite a few people up," he said, adding it wasn't perhaps the 'Dorking Dribler' but in fact the 'Gatwick gusher'.

Fri, 03 Mar 2017 15:32:00 +0000
Fed minutes could strike hawkish tone - Tips TV Mike Ingram, strategist at BGC Partners, says Fed minutes could sound hawkish, although it remains to be seen if that would result in a sustained rise in the rate hike bets. 
Watch the full Tip TV segment know what one should watch out for in the Fed minutes due later today. 
The segment also features trending topics in finance/business, Oanda Forex sentiment, trade ideas and broker recommendations.
Wed, 22 Feb 2017 12:23:00 +0000
MUST WATCH - Origin Energy video gives insights to Beetaloo shale Falcon Oil & Gas (LON:FOG) has seen great success in Australia’s Beetaloo shale basin, with wells unearthing new discoveries. A new resource evaluation report is currently being worked on to further detail the size and scope of the discovery and the potential of its surrounding areas.

A video from Origin Energy, the project operator, adds valuable insight to the venture.

Tue, 24 Jan 2017 12:31:00 +0000
'Trump Bump' still good for Atalaya Mining says Mir Copper miner Atalaya Mining PLC (LON:ATYM) has been a major winner from the 'Trump Bump', which has helped most base metal specialists soar on hopes of a massive upsurge in US infrastructure spending.
Fundamentals are well supported as well with the mine in Spain starting to ramp up production, says Zak Mir, technical analyst at Tip TV.
There is technical support at 120p and Mir is looking for a share price of 160-170p over the first quarter.
Fri, 16 Dec 2016 12:04:00 +0000
Fed threats make the pound an easy currency trade says Mir Charts for the pound against the US dollar, or cable as it is known, are not looking encouraging suggest Zak Mir, technical analyst at Tip TV.

The US Federal Reserve has threatened to raise interest rates three times next year, but Bank of England governor Mark Carney is not even going to reverse his rate cut after Brexit, says Mir.

That makes for an easy trade he says.

If the pound breaks below US$1.23, the charts say it will head back to US$1.12 while any strength up to US$1.27 is a shorting opportunity.

Fri, 16 Dec 2016 11:51:00 +0000
Brokers - RBS cut to 'hold' by Investec Wed, 10 Aug 2016 09:32:00 +0100 AIM Breakfast: Electric Word, Harvest Minerals, Jersey Oil & Gas, Rare Earth Minerals, Telit Communications, Circle Property, ITM Power, Orosur Mining, Vast Resources, Tlou Energy What’s cooking in the IPO kitchen?
LoopUp—The provider of conference calls and online meetings is seeking to join AIM. 2015 revs of £9.2m and EBITDA of £1.02m
Bacanora Lithium— To list on AIM around 28 Sep as holding company for TSX listed Bacanora Minerals at £100m market cap
Aura Energy—ASX listed uranium developer (ASX:AEE) expected to join AIM 6 September

Breakfast buffet

Electric Word (LON:ELE) 3.13p £12.8m
The specialist information business with divisions operating in the Sport and Education sectors has reported H1 May 2016 interims during which time it disposed its 70% stake in iGaming Business Ltd for gross cash consideration of £14.5m leaving £11.5m net cash. Results from continuing operations showed flat revenues of £3.3m and adjusted EBITA losses of £992k. The company is seeking ways to add scale as the Sports and Education businesses are not sufficient to support central costs and overheads.

Harvest Minerals (LON:HMI) 17.75p £16.7m
Arapua Fertiliser Project Update:  positive results for the latest agronomic and metallurgical testwork conducted at the Maximus prospect, part of its Arapua Fertiliser Project in Brazil. All results were well within the required specifications. Notably, no toxic elements are present. Excellent solubility levels. The significance of this work, is in part, the option to be able to produce and products with different grades in order to service different market sectors as commercial production develops.

Rare Earth Minerals (LON:REM) 0.87p £64.5m
Rare Earth’s 15.5% investee company, Macarthur Minerals has applied for an additional exploration licence in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, to extend the contiguous area to 367 square kilometres. The Company now has Total tenement acreage under application in the Pilbara region of 1,449 square kilometres, in addition to its Yalgoo, Edah Hill, Ravensthorpe, Sulphur Springs, Whim Creek interests in Western Australia and Nevada Stonewall interests in the United States of America.

Circle Property (LON:CRC) 148p £41.88m
Maiden results for the four months to March 2016 from the specialist regional UK property investment, development and management company. In the period from incorporation, profit before tax £1.1m, which reflects basic earnings per share of 3.8p. Maiden divi of 2.4p paid in May. NAV/Share was £1.53 at the period end. Post Brexit the company now sees a gradual resumption of normal working with occupiers continuing to sign leases and investors competing to buy buildings with a living yield

ITM Power (LON:ITM) 23p £49.9m
The energy storage and clean fuel company announced a fuel contract to supply hydrogen at £10/kg with Commercial Group, a pioneer in hydrogen fuelled fleet logistics. The contract covers fuel dispensed across ITM Power's hydrogen refuelling network, including the station recently opened in London. ITM Power currently has £16.19m of projects under contract and a further £1.79m of contracts in the final stages of negotiation, making a total of £17.98m.  FYApr17E forecasts project £3.7m sales and a £3.4m loss before Tax.

Orosur Mining (LON:OMI) 17.75p £17.56m
A director share purchase from the South American focused gold producer, developer and explorer, with non-exec Pablo Marcet picking up one million shares at CA$0.315 or 18.8p. He owns 1.23% of the company.

Tlou Energy (LON:TLOU) 7p £14.39m
The AIM and ASX listed company focused on delivering power in Botswana and Southern Africa through the development of coal bed methane has renewed a Co-operation Agreement with General Electric International and IK Holdings for the delivery of a proposed gas to power solution for Botswana, supporting a new 50MW power generation facility for which Tlou has been approved   to negotiate gas supply, construction and operation.

Vast Resources (LON:VAST) 0.325p £10.2m
The mining company with operations in Romania and Zimbabwe has updated for the quarter to June 2016. 62% increase in gold production to 4,542 ounces at Pickstone. Manaila increase in ore but decrease in concentrate produced. Further testwork being implemented. Exploration drilling underway at Baita Plai. Funding update includes a repayment to Darwin Capital. Latest placing on 11 August raising £365k at 0.285p.

Telit Communications (LON:TCM) 247.75p £284.69m
The global enabler of the Internet of Things (IoT), announces a new portfolio of LTE IoT modules. The portfolio includes four LTE Cat M1 modules for the American market and one LTE Cat NB1 module for the European market. The modules begin sampling later this year with commercial availability expected in early 2017, in alignment with the current service launch timelines of American operators.   The shares are on 13.7 x current year earnings with a 2.3% yield.

Jersey Oil & Gas (LON:JOG) 37p £3.1m
The independent upstream oil and gas company ‎focused on the UK Continental Shelf region of the North Sea, announced that alongside its co-venturer, CIECO Exploration, has agreed a farmout  of 70% of certain North Sea blocks to Statoil. Total up-front cash consideration of US$2 million, of which US$1.2 million will be payable to Jersey Oil & Gas. Statoil will fund all costs up to US$25 million in respect of the first exploration well to be drilled on the P.2170 Licence.



Tue, 23 Aug 2016 08:32:00 +0100
Commodities Week in a Minute: A welcome return to the desk, concerns over diamond demand plus DCP. Commodities

Diamonds and precious stones

For investors in the sector this week’s Anglo American results, or more precisely De Beers’ provided a note of caution for the rest of the year, certainly a view that is a little more conservative than many are hoping for, with good reason I must admit.

Proportionately H2 tends to generate lower returns than H1, but provides far more insight into the trends of the following six months or so. DB (and others) cautioning about social unrest and economic uncertainty is something to watch, especially as this is partly removed from the annual cycle of increasing inventories of polished goods following the splurge in rough purchases in H1. We should also consider the impact of Standard Chartered (plus others) continuing to withdraw their lending facilities to the industry probably driven by the notable bankruptcies of certain sightholders.

My view is that this is certainly going to impact demand for lower priced, commercial-type goods – already under the perceived pressure from synthetic goods.

Elsewhere, Snap Lake is apparently up for sale… I await that pitch document.

Finally, according to 77 Diamonds, Asscher-cut diamonds have “soared in popularity” since Pippa Middleton (You know, the one that helped drive a surge in tabloid pictures of Royal Posteriors) received an engagement ring with the fancy shape. Although the numerical increase in orders, I doubt is that great…

Precious metals

Coming back, from my travels I am slightly surprised to see bullion hovering around the $1,330 levels. Whilst a claim could easily be made for a consolidation in the trend, the commentary during the week regarding the lower than expected impact to the US economy from recent events has me a little concerned that we may be underestimating the risks to a rise before the end of the year. When I left it was practically zero chance, not so it seems now.

Admittedly, Acacia is off 7% today, but as I posted before, taking some profits from the space may not be the worst idea, certainly if bullion drifts below $1,300…

Portfolio insurance it seems, remains expensive.

(8% discount rate for CEY/ACA, 7% for RRS, sorry but I refuse to accept the countries of operation are “risk-free”)

Seems ETF’s buyers have stagnated…

And with it the momentum behind the futures market. (not to say it won’t pick up again)

Slightly out of date, but Chinese gold imports from Hong Kong fell almost 40% month on month to 70.9t in June.

Bulk commodities:

Iron ore prices continue to defy logic with prices roughly 10% higher in July with prices back around the levels seen in April, when we experienced how much the Chinese speculator can influence global pricing.
One of the main reasons behind the rise is the recovery in steel prices. Chinese steel mills have continually hit record rates of production following multiple credit expansion measures all at the same time as concerns over iron ore supplies permeate following the extensive flooding seen throughout Northern China. 
One concern will be the continued growth in port inventories…

Company announcements/news/meetings:

Many more company updates coming next week with model updates underway at this time…

DiamondCorp, Buy (PT: 11.5p)
Following the company's announcement on 27 July confirming that the South African Department of Mineral Resources has given permission for an immediate resumption of underground mining operations at the Lace diamond mine, we reinstate our formal coverage on DiamondCorp with a Buy recommendation and an unchanged 11.5p target price.
Importantly, we have retained our production forecasts in line with management guidance as we believe the impact of the suspension can be recovered through multiple work streams planned by the company before the end of the year. Our discount rate (12.6%) acknowledges the risks that lay before the team prior to full and profitable production is reached. Our NPV12.6 for the Lace operation remains $124.5m, equal to 19p/share.

Fri, 29 Jul 2016 11:01:00 +0100
Burberry not in fashion, according to broker Liberum Tue, 18 Oct 2016 10:43:00 +0100 Today's Market View - Dalradian Resources, Metals Exploration, Plymouth Minerals Dalradian Resources (LON:DALR) – Sprott reports sale of 4.4m shares in Dalradian Resources
Metals Exploration* (LON:MTL) – Talks on $5m of additional funding due to delays
Plymouth Minerals (LON:PLH) – Lithium resource verified in historical work at San Jose in Spain

Dow Jones Industrials   +0.73% at 18,506  Another record close
Nikkei 225   +0.68% at 16,498  
HK Hang Seng   +0.46% at 21,659  
Shanghai Composite    +0.01% at   3,054  
FTSE 350 Mining     -1.66% at 11,649  
AIM Basic Resources      -0.52% at   2,106  

Economic News
European stocks are rangebound this morning after having recovered early morning losses on the news of a terrorist attack in Nice.
• Copper is nearing the $5,000/t mark helped by better than expected Chinese GDP numbers and a slight decline in the US$ index.
• Gold is flat this morning after posting a c.1% decline as the BoE decided to hold rates unchanged and  as US equities closed at a new record high on better than expected corporate earnings.
• Oil prices are falling amid forecasts prices may go as low as $40/bbl as demand slows and halted production restarts. Brent is off c.1% trading at $46.8/bbl at the time of writing.
• Sovereign bond are trading lower this morning: (UK10y +3bp at 0.83%, GER10y +4bp at -0.03%, US10y +0.1bp at 1.54%).

US – The Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker said as many as two interest rate hikes remain on the cards before the end of the year.
• Markets are currently pricing in a 6% probability rates will go up as early as Jul and assign a 35% chance to a hike before Dec.
• In a promising sign for a potential recovery in the inflation pace, producer prices growth accelerated through Jun.
Date Index Period Actual Expected (Bloomberg) Previous
Tuesday JOLTS Openings May 5,500k 5,650k 5,845k (revised from 5,788k)
Wednesday Fed Beige Book       
  Monthly Budget Jun $6.3bn $19.0bn $50.5bn
Thursday PPI Jun 0.5%mom/0.3%yoy 0.3%mom/0.0%yoy 0.4%mom/-0.1%yoy
  Core PPI Jun 0.4%mom/1.3%yoy 0.1%mom/1.0%yoy 0.3%mom/1.2%yoy
  Weekly Jobless Claims   254k 265k 254k
Friday Retail Sales/Core Jun   0.1%mom/0.4%mom 0.5%mom/0.4%mom
CPI Jun  0.3%mom/1.1%yoy 0.2%mom/1.0%yoy
Core CPI Jun  0.2%mom/2.2%yoy 0.2%mom/2.2%yoy
New York Manufacturing Jul  5.0 6.0
Industrial Production Jun  0.3%mom -0.4%mom
Capacity Utilization Jun  75.1% 74.9%
  UoM Consumer Sentiment Jul   93.0 93.5
Source: Bloomberg

China – Economic growth remained unchanged through Q2 coming in 0.1pp higher than forecast helped by stimulus with latest Jun data pointing to an increased lending.
• A weaker currency provided support for exporters with the yuan trading posting a 7% drop against the US$ over the last year.
• Government spending was up 20.3%yoy in Jun.
• Q2 GDP: 6.7%yoy v 6.7%yoy in Q1/16 and 6.6%yoy forecast.
• Separate reports for industrial production and retail sales pointed to an acceleration in growth in both metrics beating market estimates.
• On a less positive note, capital investments growth (ex rural) has come down driven by slower private investments in fixed assets.
• Industrial Production (YTD): 6.0%yoy v 5.9%yoy in May and 5.9%yoy forecast.
• Retail Sales (YTD): 10.3%yoy v 10.2%yoy in May and 10.2%yoy forecast.
• Investments (YTD): 9.0%yoy v 9.6%yoy in May and 9.4%yoy forecast.
• Money supply measures have all beaten forecasts accelerating in Jun as government seems to have eased access to credit to help economic growth.
• The broad M2 supply measure was up 11.8%yoy in line with May and 0.4pp higher than forecast. Government annual growth target is 13%.
• New CNY  loans jumped 40%mom to CNY1,380bn v CNY986bn in May and CNY1,000bn forecast.

UK – The nine-member BoE monetary policy committee voted 8-1 to keep rates unchanged at 0.5%.
• The pound jumped on the news as markets assigned more than an 80% chance of a rate cut.
• Although, the BoE stood ready to ease later in Aug.
• “Most members of the committee expect monetary policy to be loosened in Aug,” minutes read.
• “The committee discussed various easing options and combinations thereof. The exact extend of any additional stimulus measures will be based on the committee’s updated forecast, and their composition wil take account of any interactions with the financial system.”

Philippines – The Mabilo gold copper project in Camarines Norte, Luzon, has got an environmental clearance certificate and renewed its exploration permit.
• The news comes amid a heightened concern over the effect of the recently launched state audit of existing mining licenses in the country on the metals’ supply.

US$1.1138/eur vs 1.1108/eur yesterday.   Yen 105.96/$ vs 105.61/$.   SAr 14.317/$ vs 14.354/$.   $1.344/gbp vs $1.323/gbp.
0.765/aud vs 0.764/aud.   CNY 6.682/$ vs 6.687/$ -

Commodity News
Precious metals:
Gold US$1,332/oz vs US$1,327/oz yesterday –
Gold ETFs 64.3moz v 64.4moz yesterday –
Platinum US$1,095/oz vs US$1,083/oz yesterday –
Palladium US$645/oz vs US$638/oz yesterday
Silver US$20.18/oz vs US$20.19/oz yesterday
Base metals:   
Copper US$ 4,965/t vs US$4,955/t yesterday –
Aluminium US$ 1,684/t vs US$1,679/t yesterday – Chinese aluminium production fell 2.4%yoy to 2.7mt in Jun taking the total for the first six months to 15.3mt (-1.9%yoy).
Nickel US$ 10,370/t vs US$10,470/t yesterday –
Zinc US$ 2,211/t vs US$2,2201/t yesterday –
Lead US$ 1,912/t vs US$1,886/t yesterday
Tin US$ 18,045/t vs US$17,945/t yesterday

Oil US$46.9/bbl vs US$46.5/bbl yesterday -
Natural Gas US$2.710/mmbtu vs US$2.747/mmbtu yesterday
Uranium US$26.00/lb vs US$26.20/lb yesterday – Congress slam EPA for war on American Uranium
• The Daily Caller report “The House of Representatives just dealt a huge blow to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) uranium mining regulations, which may force the US to depend entirely on imported nuclear fuel.
• The House barred the EPA from erecting new regulatory hurdles Wednesday that could make it much harder for American uranium to compete with the world.
• “In January 2015 the EPA introduced a rule that would greatly extend the amount of time it takes to permit a uranium mine,” Harry Anthony, President of the Uranium Producers of America, told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
• “The new rule would add two years to the permit process in the name of protecting water, even though the agency admits there has never been a case of contamination in 30 years. It already takes five or six years to permit a uranium permit right now. This is the most regulated industry in the world, but its never harmed anything!” Anthony said.

Read more:
Iron ore 62% Fe spot (cfr Tianjin) US$54.4/t vs US$55.5/t – Iron ore inventories in Chinese ports climbed for fifth week marking the longest run of gains since Dec/15.
• Stockpiles currently stand at 105.4mt or roughly 10% of the nation’s annual seaborne iron ore demand.
Steel – Brexit might enable the UK government to bail out the British steel industry.  Bail outs are currently not allowed under EU regulations.
Thermal coal (1st year forward cif ARA) US$59.3.0/t vs US$60.0/t yesterday

Tungsten - APT European prices dropped to $185-200/mtu vs $185-210/mtu from the previous week

Company News

Dalradian Resources (LON:DALR) 61.3 pence, Mkt Cap £132.9m – Sprott reports sale of 4.4m shares in Dalradian Resources
• Sprott the Canadian asset manager have sold 4.4m shares in Dalridian Resources
• We hope this is just a bit of profit taking and not something more ominous as the company moves towards larger scale production
• Dalradian recently announced encouraging metallurgical results showing overall gold recovery of 94.3% is achievable with a simplified processing circuit.
• They also released a impressive updated NI 43-101 resource from SRK on the Curraghinalt project showing around 2.1moz of gold at an average grade of around 11.6 g/t as a measured an indicated resource and 2.3moz grading 10.1g/t inc in the inferred category.
• We note that director Thomas Obradovich also sold 150,000 shares as reported on 1 July.
• Dalradian announced the start of its Test Stoping Program in April, starting on the v-75 vein at just 90m below surface with the program to start with two test stopes .
• The idea is to accurately replicate the planned mining techniques for a full-scale mine and may add up to two more stopes.
• The stoping program should be completed in the second half but it would be helpful if the company were to provide some update on this to the market on progress within the test mine.
Conclusion:  The stock sales may be perfectly innocent but we have learnt to start asking questions when directors and investors report selling.  It is rare to discover such a high-grade gold resource in scale and we sincerely hope the company will be able to show its amenability for mining to the market.

Metals Exploration* (LON:MTL) 9.4p, Mkt Cap £162m – Talks on $5m of additional funding due to delays
• Metals Exploration report they are in talks for $5m of additional working capital to cover the company while it completes debt restructuring.
• Debt restructuring is required due to the failure to pay $15m of capital due on 30 June.
• The payment of bi-annual interest now requires the company to seek $5m of additional working capital to continue to meet its commitments while debt restructuring talks continue.
• The company plan to restructure $75m of debt and an $8m cost overrun facility
• Ore milling has restarted at the Runruno project in the Philippines following temporary suspension due to problems with mill bearings and permits required to restart the operations.
• Metals Exploration made the interest payments scheduled for 30 June 2016 but has not made the capital repayment.
Conclusion:  The good bit is that the mine and plant are now largely complete.  Management now need to complete the debt restructuring to secure the company’s finances.
*SP Angel act as Broker to Metals Exploration

Plymouth Minerals (LON:PLH) A$0.2, mkt cap A$26m – Lithium resource verified in historical work at San Jose in Spain
• Plymouth Minerals reports that it has verified a ‘historic estimate of mineralisation’ for the San Jose lithium project in Spain.
• Work was done on the resource from 1985-1991 pre-dating JORC resource guidelines.
• Historic pre-feasibility work shows >90% Li recoveries by calcining and atmospheric pressure only sulphuric acid leaching to create a saleable lithium carbonate end product. Tin was also recovered to +80% in this process flow sheet..
• The mineralisation is mainly found in the micas of muscovite-fengite type in the host rock, and in lesser proportion in the amblygonite-montebrasite of the veins.
• There has been some discussion in the industry over the recovery of lithium from historic tin mines where lithium is contained in micas and is often contained in waste dumps.
• Australian company Lithium Australia run by the rather controversial Adrian Griffin reckons lithium can be extracted from micas and can reduce production costs to under $2,000/t.  The company make the case for processing lithium micas in the following presentation
• If the process works then it should effectively open up a number of new sources for lithium production.
• “The San Jose Deposit was formed by an amalgamation of quartz and quartz-pegmatite veins, which formed a stockwork hosted by a metasediments. The mineralisation is disseminated in both the host as lithium micas and the veins hosting tin as cassiterite, lithium as amblygonite-montebrasite and minor tungsten as wolframite.”
o Plymouth also holds the Morille tungsten project in Spain and the Banio and Mamana potash projects in Gabon.
o See:
Conclusion:  Plymouth Minerals is expanding on a number of fronts creating new opportunities for potential success.  The San Jose project provides further opportunity for the company to succeed in Spain at a time when tungsten prices are less than compelling.

Fri, 15 Jul 2016 10:34:00 +0100
Downgrades all round for Whitbread, Goldman not a fan of the grocers Thu, 27 Oct 2016 05:07:00 +0100 Oil price, Amerisur, Schlumberger, Sundry, Bowleven, Providence, Andes Energia, Bucket list, And finally... Oil price
Who woulda guessed, five days after the Doha disaster the oil price, despite falling yesterday, is likely to end up the best part of five bucks up on the week? This morning the new June WTI contract is around $44 and Brent is dead on $45, this is despite a strong greenback and handbags about production levels from Russia, Saudi Arabia and Libya. All those countries have said that they will up their production but may not be able to deliver. Most experts tell me that not only is Russia flat out already but the sanctions that prohibit US service companies from assisting their further growth remain in place thus holding or even eroding production.  The Saudis could of course ramp up production but with summer approaching unless they do, domestic demand for power generation will take away valuable export barrels. As for Libya it is indeed the dark horse here but I remain unconvinced that there is an imminent increase in supplies available at least in the short term. Finally the team over at the Vampire Squids have said that oil prices must fall in the short term and dont forget that they have a $20 low to achieve…
Amerisur Resources
A number of things to report from AMER this morning led by their announcement that they have spudded the Jaguareté-1 well in the San Pedro block in Eastern Paraguay. With a prospective resource of 106m barrels of oil being looked for and 334m in the block,this is a high risk, high reward old fashioned exploration wildcat in a new basin which could be a game changer.  The good thing is that with lower costs and an incredibly efficient team the company think that the well will cost only $9m and be finished in around 40 days. Elsewhere with April drawing to a close the OBA is apparently still going very well and will be operative very soon.
It should be noted that the company’s report and accounts have been issued recently and they do show a considerable move in the right direction in a number of key areas. Firstly it is a proper, full set of accounts which major shareholders have been waiting for, secondly it seems that the board has taken on board some comments from last year regarding corporate governance standards which they say are now in a ‘positive direction of travel’. Stephen Foss is now the senior independent non-executive Director and there are therefore now three independent NED’s. The Remcom and the Audit committee are now fully independent and the former has independent advisors for assessing remuneration. As part of this there are no more share-based incentives to NED’s and any left in place have been relinquished. As a result of these moves, which the company are the first to agree are only part of a process, a god deal of box-ticking has been done to achieve best practice in corporate governance.
Overall it is an exciting time for AMER, the well in Paraguay which could be transformational as well as a good drilling campaign in Columbia through the year which should bear fruit and of course the OBA which changes the economics on a massive scale. Very much still part of the bucket list despite the 70% rise this year and 40% since I published in February.
1Q figures from SLB last night and they just about delivered. EPS at 40 cents beat the whisper by one cent and revenue was $6.5bn in the quarter which missed but only slightly. The dividend was confirmed at 50 cents which gives SLB a yield of 2.5%. The company say that the continued drop in activity combined with ‘persistent pricing pressure’ is making life hard in the short term which is still deteriorating in the current quarter but that they remain optimistic about the medium term outlook helped by their ‘unmatched ability to generate cash’.
It hasn’t been the best few days for Providence Resources but they have today shown some upside at the Druid and Drombeg prospects after the recent collaboration with Schlumberger. They quote mean in-place resources of 5,095 bbls and suggest that being vertically stacked only one well should be needed for evaluation and with costs down so much it might even be done for around $85m gross.
Bowleven has announced that it has been granted a one year extension to its Bomono licence onshore Cameroon. Still in the bucket list for huge value in Etinde despite being late but plenty of cash for the patient.
And Andes Energia has announced February production of 3,538 b/d in Argentina and Colombia, although I havent seen the company lately, and hope to on their next visit I remain extremely positive about the company for its unrivaled portfolio particularly in the Vaca Muerta.
Finally I spent some time over at TipTV yesterday talking through the bucket list, the interview which is also on the website can be viewed here.
And finally…
Another big weekend coming up, its the rugby European Champions Cup semi finals with Sarries v Wasps and the Tigers v Racing 92.
It is also semi finals weekend in the FA Cup, tomorrow sees the Toffees take on the Red Devils and on Sunday the Hornets face the Eagles.
In the Prem it’s business as usual, at the top the Foxes host the Swans, the Noisy Neighbours host the Potters and Spurs again play on Monday night against the Baggies. In the top v bottom the Gooners go to the Maccams and the Magpies go to Anfield while the Canaries dont get a game due to the FA Cup.

This year my daughter Holly and some friends are running in memory of a close friend who died last spring. They are hoping to raise money for the Anthony Nolan trust which is a brilliant charity. I know you all get many requests at this time of year but if you have a few coppers to spare it would be much appreciated. Link is below with all the details, thank you very much.

Fri, 22 Apr 2016 13:41:00 +0100
VSA Capital Market Movers: MP Evans  MP Evans Sells NAPCo Stake

Indonesian palm oil producer, MP Evans (LON:MPE), has announced the sale of its 34.37% stake in Australian cattle business NAPCo to the Queensland Investment Corporation (QIC).
• US$79m attributable to MPE, US$64m after tax and costs, compared to the last reported NAV of US$52m
• Proceeds will be used for MPE’s ongoing capex programme and to potentially acquire additional land for development, preferably near to its existing areas of operation
• MPE will also consider a special dividend of 5p, details of which to be announced once the deal is completed
• The acquirer has also reached agreement with NAPCo’s largest shareholder, the Foster Family, to acquire its 61% stake on the same terms, for a total deal size of slightly more than A$300m (cUS$230m)

VSA Comment
The long awaited NAPCo disposal has finally taken place, albeit at a lower price than was originally rumoured in the media (which would have delivered gross proceeds of more like US$100m to MPE on a total acquisition price of US$300m (A$400m)). The deal is dependent on various statutory conditions, which will be concluded in the next three months with settlement occurring shortly after. As QIC is a domestic buyer, there is of course no foreign investment review issue, which has caused problems with some attempted deals, with similar-sized Kidman & Co being the most prominent in recent weeks.

MPE is planning to spend cUS$75m over the next couple of years (50% on planting, 50% to fund construction of the Bangka and second Kalimantan mill). Clearly this transaction provides a significant boost to MPE’s coffers for the next few years of development, although it of course removes the PAT contribution from these operations on its P&L in future years. In FY 2015, the NAPCo contribution was US$11.0m (a record profit, although mostly driven by non-cash herd revaluation).

However, we welcome the move to become 100% focused on palm oil (with residual Malaysian property interests). Despite Australian cattle being very much in vogue at the moment, with elevated prices, this disposal should be placed into context of a number of difficult years for NAPCo, from when MPE began to build up its stake in 2005.

We maintain our view that MPE provides the best current opportunity for investors to gain large-scale palm oil exposure on the London market and specifically highlight its, soon to be significantly increased, net cash position, compared to some of its highly leveraged peers.

Fri, 06 May 2016 08:19:00 +0100
Market briefing: US markets closed mostly higher yesterday, amid a surge in financial firms UK Market Snapshot
UK markets closed mixed yesterday. Mining sector stocks, Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton, Glencore and Anglo American fell 2.0%, 2.1%, 2.6% and 3.6%, respectively, amid lower metal prices. Meggitt declined 3.2%, following a broker downgrade on the stock to ‘Sell’ from ‘Hold’, who also trimmed its price target to 325.0p from 363.0p. Burberry Group dipped 2.7%, after it reported a drop in its earnings for the year ended 31 March 2016. On the upside, lenders, Lloyds Banking Group, Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland Group climbed 3.3%, 3.7% and 4.3%, respectively, on speculation that the US Federal Reserve (Fed) would raise interest rates sooner than expected. easyJet advanced 3.5%, after a leading broker increased its price target on the stock to £15.50 from £15.0. ARM Holdings added 1.9%, after it acquired imaging specialist company, Apical, for $350.0 million. The FTSE 100 marginally declined, to close at 6,165.8, while the FTSE 250 rose 0.2%, to settle at 16,881.2.
US Market Snapshot
US markets closed mostly higher yesterday, amid a surge in financial firms. However, the gains were erased after the Fed minutes indicated that majority of the policymakers are ready to hike rates in June if data permits. Goldman Sachs Group, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America and Huntington Bancshares climbed 3.4%, 3.9%, 4.9% and 5.3%, respectively. Lowe’s Cos edged 3.3% up, as its first quarter earnings surpassed market expectations. Bucking the trend, Target Corp plunged 7.6%, after it reported downbeat sales in the first quarter and offered a disappointing earnings outlook for the second quarter. Staples shed 0.5%, after it reported a fall in its net profit for the first quarter. However, its adjusted revenue and earnings were better than anticipated during the period. The S&P 500 marginally gained, to settle at 2,047.6. The DJIA marginally slid, to settle at 17,526.6, while the NASDAQ advanced 0.5%, to close at 4,739.1.
Europe Market Snapshot
Other European markets finished higher yesterday, as banks rallied amid hopes of a rate hike by the US Fed next month. CaixaBank, Banco Popolare, UniCredit, BNP Paribas and Commerzbank gained 0.3%, 0.4%, 0.7%, 1.5% and 2.5%, respectively. Kuka surged 7.4%, after Midea Group made an offer to increase its stake in the firm in a deal valued at €4.6 billion. Novartis advanced 1.5%, after it announced the departure of its pharmaceuticals head, David Epstein. On the losing side, Sonova Holding tumbled 6.4%, after it posted lower than expected earnings in the second half of the year. Suez shed 3.6%, following a broker downgrade to ‘Neutral’ from ‘Outperform’. The FTSEurofirst 300 index gained 0.8%, to close at 1,325.8. Among other European markets, the German DAX Xetra 30 rose 0.5%, to close at 9,943.2, while the French CAC-40 advanced 0.5%, to settle at 4,319.3.
Asia Market Snapshot
Markets in Asia are trading weaker this morning, as rising prospects of a rate hike by the Fed in June lifted the US Dollar and weighed on commodity prices. In Japan, Start Today has tanked 9.2%, after its founder and major shareholder sold some of his stake at a discount to yesterday’s closing price. Oil producers, Japan Petroleum Exploration and Inpex have fallen 4.3% and 5.6%, respectively, on lower crude oil prices. On the flipside, financial sector stocks, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group and Dai-ichi Life Insurance have climbed 0.1%, 1.1% and 4.4%, respectively. In Hong Kong, PetroChina and CNOOC have declined 1.9% each. In South Korea, SK Innovation and S Oil have eased 2.0% and 2.8%, respectively. The Nikkei 225 index is trading marginally lower at 16,636.7. The Hang Seng index is trading 0.4% down at 19,749.6, while the Kospi index is trading 0.6% lower at 1,944.5.

Crude Oil
At 0330GMT today, Brent Crude Oil one month futures contract is trading 1.70% or $0.83 lower at $48.10 per barrel, extending its previous session losses. Yesterday, the contract declined 0.71% or $0.35, to settle at $48.93 per barrel, amid strength in the greenback and after the Energy Information Administration reported that US crude inventories unexpectedly climbed 1.3 million barrels to 541.3 million barrels for the week ended 13 May 2016.
At 0330GMT today, Gold futures contract is trading 1.21% or $15.40 lower at $1259.00 per ounce. Yesterday, the contract declined 0.20% or $2.50, to settle at $1274.40 per ounce, amid hawkish minutes from the US Fed’s April meeting.
At 0330GMT today, the EUR is trading a tad higher against the USD at $1.1222, ahead of the ECB accounts of the monetary policy meeting, due to release today. Yesterday, the EUR weakened 0.86% versus the USD, to close at $1.1216, after data showed that the Euro-zone consumer prices declined in April on an annual basis. The US Dollar rallied against its peers after the US Fed minutes indicated that the central bank could raise interest rates in June.
At 0330GMT today, the GBP is trading 0.16% lower against the USD at $1.4576, ahead of the UK retail sales data for April, set to release in a few hours. Yesterday, the GBP strengthened 0.94% versus the USD, to close at $1.4599, after UK’s average earnings rose more than expected in the three months ended March.
Fixed Income
In the US, long term treasury prices fell and pushed yields sharply higher, after the FOMC minutes revealed that most of the officials supported a June rate hike, if economic data improved. Yesterday, yield on 10-year notes surged 11 basis points to 1.87%, while yield on 2-year notes climbed 8 basis points to 0.90%. Meanwhile, 30-year bond yield jumped 8 basis points to 2.67%.

Key Economic News
UK average earnings including bonus advanced more than expected in the January-March 2016 period
The average earnings including bonus in the UK climbed 2.00% in the January-March 2016 period on an annual basis, compared to a revised rise of 1.90% in the December-February 2016 period. Markets were expecting the average earnings including bonus to rise 1.70%.
UK average earnings excluding bonus rose less than expected in the January-March 2016 period
In the January-March 2016 period, on a YoY basis, the average earnings excluding bonus in the UK rose 2.10%, less than market expectations for an advance of 2.30%. The average earnings excluding bonus had recorded a rise of 2.20% in the December-February 2016 period.
Employment in the UK registered an unexpected increase in the January-March 2016 period
Employment climbed unexpectedly by 44.00 K in the UK, in the January-March 2016 period, more than market anticipations of a decline of 0.00 K. Employment had recorded an increase of 20.00 K in the December-February 2016 period.
Number of unemployment benefits claimants in the UK slid unexpectedly in April
Number of unemployment benefits claimants recorded an unexpected drop of 2.40 K in the UK, in April, less than market expectations of an advance of 5.00 K. Number of unemployment benefits claimants had recorded a revised gain of 14.70 K in the prior month.
UK ILO unemployment rate steadied in the January-March 2016 period
The ILO unemployment rate remained flat at 5.10% in the UK, in the January-March 2016 period. Markets were expecting the ILO unemployment rate to record a flat reading.
UK claimant count rate fell in April
In the UK, the claimant count rate fell to a level of 2.10% in April, meeting market expectations. In the prior month, the claimant count rate had recorded a revised reading of 2.20%.
Euro-zone core CPI rose as expected in April
On a YoY basis, the final core consumer price index (CPI) climbed 0.70% in April, in the Eurozone, compared to an advance of 1.00% in the previous month. The preliminary figures had also indicated an advance of 0.70%. Market anticipation was for the core CPI to advance 0.70%.
Euro-zone CPI fell as expected in April
The final CPI registered a drop of 0.20% on a YoY basis in April, in the Eurozone, meeting market expectations. The preliminary figures had also recorded a fall of 0.20%. In the prior month, the CPI had recorded a flat reading.
Euro-zone CPI remained unchanged in April
The CPI remained steady on a monthly basis in the Eurozone in April, in line with market expectations. In the previous month, the CPI had risen 1.20%.
US Fed minutes indicate that June rate hike is on the table
According to minutes of the US Federal Open Market Committee’s April 26-27 meeting, most members of the Fed interest-rate setting committee are ready to lift interest rates in June, if incoming data points to stronger second quarter economic growth along with a firming labour market and if inflation progresses toward the committee’s 2.0% objective. The minutes further revealed that some Fed officials were concerned about the upcoming Brexit vote and the unanticipated developments associated with China’s management of its exchange rate.
US mortgage applications fell in the last week
On a weekly basis, mortgage applications fell 1.60% in the US, in the week ended 13 May 2016. Mortgage applications had advanced 0.40% in the prior week.
Canadian investors remained net buyers of foreign securities in the previous month
Canadian investors remained net buyers of C$2.27 billion worth of foreign securities in March, as compared to being net buyers of a revised C$4.37 billion worth of foreign securities in the prior month.
Foreign investors became net buyers of Canadian securities in the previous month
Foreign investors were net buyers of C$17.17 billion worth of Canadian securities in March, from being net buyers of a revised C$15.94 billion worth of Canadian securities in the prior month. Markets were anticipating foreign investors to buy C$10.35 billion worth of Canadian securities.
Japanese housing loans recorded a rise in 1Q 2016
Housing loans in Japan registered a rise of 1.90% in 1Q 2016 on a YoY basis. Housing loans had risen 2.20% in the prior quarter.
Japanese machinery orders advanced surprisingly in March
On a monthly basis in March, machinery orders registered an unexpected rise of 5.50% in Japan, higher than market expectations for a fall of 2.00%. Machinery orders had recorded a drop of 9.20% in the previous month.
Foreign investors turned net buyers of Japanese stocks in the previous week
Foreign investors turned net buyers of ¥71.70 billion worth of Japanese stocks in the week ended 13 May 2016, as compared to being net sellers of a revised ¥435.00 billion worth of Japanese stocks in the previous week.
Japanese machinery orders rose more than expected in March
In Japan, machinery orders climbed 3.20% on an annual basis in March, higher than market expectations for a rise of 0.80%. In the previous month, machinery orders had recorded a drop of 0.70%.
Foreign investors remained net buyers of Japanese bonds in the previous week
Foreign investors remained net buyers of ¥348.40 billion worth of Japanese bonds in the week ended 13 May 2016, from being net buyers of ¥21.90 billion worth of Japanese bonds in the prior week.
Japanese investors turned net sellers of foreign stocks in the previous week
Japanese investors turned net sellers of ¥152.10 billion worth of foreign stocks in the week ended 13 May 2016, from being net buyers of a revised ¥17.50 billion worth of foreign stocks in the prior week.
Japanese investors remained net buyers of foreign bonds in the previous week
Japanese investors were net buyers of ¥1121.80 billion worth of foreign bonds in the week ended 13 May 2016, from being net buyers of a revised ¥270.20 billion worth of foreign bonds in the previous week.
Chinese MNI business sentiment index fell in May
In May, the MNI business sentiment index in China eased to 50.00, compared to a reading of 50.50 in the prior month.

Thu, 19 May 2016 09:02:00 +0100
Northland Capital Partners View on the City - ValiRx plc ValiRx Plc (LON:VAL) – CORP*: Clinical development update
Market Cap: £3.8m; Current Price: 7.25p

Ethics Committee Approval Received for VAL401
 ValiRx issued an update on the clinical development of its cancer treatment drug, VAL401.
 The group confirmed that it has received a positive opinion recommending approval of the trial protocol from the Ethics Committee covering its clinical site in Tbilisi.
 This opinion will now be combined with extensive documentation on the planned trial for its final submission to the Competent Authority in Georgia for the regulation of clinical trials.
 If the final submission to the Georgian Competent Authority is positive, ValiSeek would then have necessary consents to launch the clinical trial site.
 The proposed trial is labelled: "A Phase II study to assess the efficacy, safety and tolerability of VAL401 in the treatment of patients with locally advanced or metastatic Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC) after failure of at least one prior chemotherapeutic regimen".
 ValiRx also confirm that the first batch of the VAL401 capsules for use in the trial has completed primary manufacture. The capsules are now undergoing final quality control procedures before shipment to Tbilisi for patient dosing.

NORTHLAND CAPITAL PARTNERS VIEW: Receiving ethics approval is a significant step in the regulatory process prior to patient recruitment and dosing—it is a precondition in the Georgian regulatory approval process. As such, ValiRx is a step closer to dosing patients in its VAL401 programme. The commencement of this trial will be a major milestone for ValiRx, as it will move the group’s second programme into the clinic.

Thu, 14 Jul 2016 08:17:00 +0100