Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Giuseppe Verdi: "Anvil Chorus" from "Il Trovatore"

The Anvil Chorus is the English term for the Coro di zingari (Italian gypsy chorus), a piece of music from Act 2, Scene 1 of Giuseppe Verdi's Il trovatore.

Click the figure below to see the video and news.

 GGiuseppe Verdi:
See also:
"Anvil Chorus" from "Il Trovatore"

You too can be a LatAm reporter for a major international newspaper

It's easy! Follow the bouncing ball:

1) Read IKN

2) Rolodex!

3) Get assistant to do gruntwork

4) Insert anti-Chávez bias

5) Hey Presto!

Does Simone Rosemary read IKN? Bet yer sweet bippy, dude.

Giuseppe Verdi: Nabucco, Va', pensiero

Va', pensiero is a chorus from the third act of Nabucco (1842) by Giuseppe Verdi, with words by Temistocle Solera, inspired by Psalm 137.

Click the figure below to see the video and news.

 Giuseppe Verdi:
See also:
"Va, pensiero" from "Nabucco"

The cost of living in LatAm cities

Mercer has come out with its annual survey that ranks the cost of living in 215 major world cities for foreigners living there (note...this ranking does not rank the cost in terms for locals). Number one is the most expensive, number 215 is the cheapest. Now for sure we at IKN don't care much about the rest of the world because LatAm rules everything amen, so this little table shows how LatAm cities figure in the Mercer list:

Mercer: Cost of Living Survey
for foreigners in world cities
city ranking
Sao Paulo 20
Rio de Janeiro 29
Havana 45
Bogota 66
Brasilia 70
Caracas 100
Santiago de Chile 123
Panama City 127
Montevideo 129
SJ Puerto Rico 129
Lima 135
Santo Domingo 147
Buenos Aires 161
Mexico City 166
Guatemala 169
SJ Costa Rica 183
Monterrey 193
Quito 194
Asuncion 204
Tegucigalpa 206
La Paz 211
Managua 212

The region's most expensive city is Sao Paulo Brazil, something that will surprise nobody who's been there. Havana ranks highly for foreigners mainly due to forex rules. Then comes Bogota, ranked 66 in the world. Looking down the list Buenos Aires still stands out as a bargain (thanks to that 4:1 forex to the dollar), as does Monterrey. La Paz is a great place to live, by the way, not just for the prices.

A special message to one, special mail correspondent

This time last week, I got the first of a series of foul-mouthed hatemails from some anonymous (or so he thinks) wiseguy telling me about the wonderful news that would be coming out of Gammon Gold ( (GRS) soon and how the stock was going to fly and how I suck and this and that. Today the news comes out and to be fair, the general lines of the NR are pretty close to the predictions made by the mailer. However, he got one thing way wrong. Here's the stock's reaction:
Yes folks, yet another new 52 week low struck by GAM. This humble corner of cyberspace would, therefore, like to direct the following two messages to my mailpal:

1) How cute that you got fed inside information, eh? Seems like while you and your extra lucky friends that were privy to extra special intel were buying, other people were selling. Ever get the feeling you've been played, dumbass?


Why is South American Silver ( so keen on running a bought deal financing this month?

On June 18th South American Silver ( announced a $4m bought deal financing with Canadian house Wellington West as lead underwriter. This is probably a smart move, as even though SAC had working capital of over $5.3m as per its last report (March 31st) and was burning it at a modest rate of $400k per month, taking advantage of the recent price hike isn't such a bad tactic.

It's also smart when you consider the bad news about concessions in Bolivia that's bound to affect its flagship Mallku Khota project that has kinda been non-reported in the English language media up to now. Yet another reason to subscribe to The IKN Weekly, as subscribers knew all about the upcoming crapstorm that's going to hit Bolivian-based juniors two issues ago on June 20th. It's not too late to cancel your participation in the bot deal and leave Wellington holding the bag,'s not due closed until July 12th :-) Here's the excerpt from IKN59.

Bolivia’s mining law

Last week, the Bolivian government ran a “New Mining Law” seminar to discuss the structure of the reforms to come with the industry. Here are some of the main points to consider about the upcoming changes to the law (14):

1) All mining operations will be run as 50/50 joint ventures with the State, via its Comibol state mining company (15).

2) No new concessions and many current concessions revoked. Concessions that have already been granted to co-operative groups inside Bolivia will be honoured, but the new law envisages that current non-cooperative concession holders will have to move to a operators contract within one or two years and that in the future only contracts to mine to companies and individuals will be granted. To quote the Vice-Minister for the Productive Development of Mining and Metallurgy Héctor Córdova (16),Before the granting of a concession brought certain privileges to its owner, such as the possibility of using the concession as loan collateral or even as a family heirloom, but now the contracts will state that the mineral resources are owned by the State of Bolivia and will authorize mining rights to the operator for their exploitation and the contract holders will no longer be owners of the resources.”

3) An as yet undefined proportion of profits made by mining companies will have to be reinvested inside Bolivia and will not be remittable. This rule is envisaged as an alternative to raising further current mining royalty rates, or in other words it’s a new stealth tax on mining.

4) Once the new big smelting plant, currently under construction at Karachipampa Bolivia, is opened, all lead, zinc and silver production in national territory will be required by law to be sent to this plant for processing. As any mining executive will immediately recognize, this is a serious crimp on potential profits for privately owned mining operations in Bolivia, as smelting charges can be raised (or lowered) at a moment’s notice and the mining company is forced to pay the price charged. When the smelting operations are held in the hands of the State (and an openly Socialist one at that), the shivers that run down capitalist spines are even stronger.

5) Indigenous consultancy on projects will be an integral part of the permitting process, much like the current situation in Ecuador where not only does the law exist but it applied to the letter.

At the conference, Mining Minister José Pimentel said that the aim was to have a “clear concept” of what mining in Bolivia would be like in the future and that mining in the country should be “efficient, profitable and responsible”. That may be his wish, but your author wonders “profitable for whom?” and once again states clearly that junior mining companies operating or wanting to operate in Bolivia should be avoided like the veritable plague by sector investors. When the field of play is tipped so heavily in favour of the State there threatens to be mere crumbs left for the retail player compared to peers operating in different, more ‘investor-friendly’ countries. Or put another way, it didn’t surprise this author in the least to hear that South American Silver (, the junior silver exploration company currently developing its Mallku Khota project in Bolivia, chose this week to announce its $4m bought deal financing (17) to be run by Wellington West. It’s not going to have much chance of raising at current levels once news of changes in the mining laws in Bolivia becomes more common knowledge. A company headed up by ex-Novagold Greg Johnson, too....hoodathunkit?

A buy

It's been a while, but I've actually stumped up and bought a new stock position this morning after paring down exposure and raising cash these last few weeks (all as explained in The IKN Weekly). Subscribers know which stock got bought, but here's the chart at least:

I'm no chartybuyer, but it does look about the right time on that evidence, no?

A quick and friendly reminder

Today is quarter and half year end. Portfolio managers sometimes do strange things on days like these.

Chart of the day is...

....the US Dollar (USD) index, weekly candles.

This humble scribe was looking at the above chart yesterday and thinking, "Y'know, we really, really don't want to see the dollar make a sharp drop right now".

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The shock is not the scam....

Carol and Dan (for it is they)

....and the shock isn't that the accused are Canadians (I duh, dude). No, the shock is that the SEC has actually gotten off its butt and done something about it. Link here, full SEC complaint here, the top of the NR here:

SEC Charges Two Canadians With Fraudulently Touting Penny Stocks on a Website, Facebook and Twitter


Washington, D.C., June 29, 2010 — The Securities and Exchange Commission announced today that it has obtained an emergency asset freeze against a Canadian couple who fraudulently touted penny stocks through their website, Facebook and Twitter. The SEC also charged two companies the couple control and obtained an asset freeze against them.

According to the SEC's complaint, the defendants profited by selling penny stocks at or around the same time that they were touting them on The website invites investors to sign up for daily stock alerts through email, text messages, Facebook and Twitter.

The SEC alleges that since at least April 2009, Carol McKeown and Daniel F. Ryan, a couple residing in Montreal, Canada, have touted U.S. microcap companies. According to the SEC's complaint, McKeown and Ryan received millions of shares of touted companies through their two corporations, defendants Downshire Capital Inc., and Meadow Vista Financial Corp., as compensation for their touting. McKeown and Ryan sold the shares on the open market while PennyStockChaser simultaneously predicted massive price increases for the issuers, a practice known as "scalping."

"As alleged in our complaint, McKeown and Ryan used all the modern methods to communicate with investors including the PennyStockChaser website, e-mail, text messages, Facebook, and Twitter yet failed to adequately communicate that their rosy predictions for touted stocks were accompanied by their sales of those very same stocks." said Eric I. Bustillo, Director of the SEC's Miami Regional Office.

The SEC's complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, also alleges McKeown, Ryan and one of their corporations failed to disclose the full amount of the compensation they received for touting stocks on PennyStockChaser. The SEC alleges that McKeown, Ryan and their corporations have realized at least $2.4 million in sales proceeds from their scalping scheme continues here.

This is precisely the same 'scalping' technique the Thom Calandra used when he illegally touted Ecometals, by the way. Meanwhile over at Pennystockchaser HQ today, we get a 404 instead of a lot of BS:

Not Found

The requested URL /tag/pennystockchasercom/ was not found on this server.

Apache/2.2.3 (CentOS) Server at Port 80

Want to know what was going on? Here's one example of many from the full complaint:

37. Bluewave's trading volume increased significantly as a result of the Defendants' promotional campaign. Between January 1, 2010 and April 15,2010, immediately prior to the campaign, trading was almost non-existent with a total ofonly 57,100 shares traded.

38. By contrast, in the days following the promotional campaign, trading volume was almost two millions shares per day.

39. On March 19, 2010, a month prior to the promotional campaign, Meadow Vista received 1,000,000 shares of Bluewave. As the touting started, Meadow Vista sold 400,000 shares between Apri116, 2010 and April 19,2010 for net proceeds of approximately $184,000.

Thanks to SB for the headsup.

Problem 468: Circle, Chord, Midpoint, Congruence, Angle

Geometry Problem
Click the figure below to see the complete problem 468 about Circle, Chord, Midpoint, Congruence, Angle.

Circle, Chord, Midpoint, Congruence, Angle
See also:
Complete Problem 468

Level: High School, SAT Prep, College geometry

Problem 467: Concentric Circles, Chord, Tangent, Congruence, Measurement

Geometry Problem
Click the figure below to see the complete problem 467 about Concentric Circles, Chord, Tangent, Congruence, Measurement.

Concentric Circles, Chord, Tangent, Congruence, Measurement
See also:
Complete Problem 467

Level: High School, SAT Prep, College geometry

Problem 466: Concentric Circles, Secant, Congruence, Measurement

Geometry Problem
Click the figure below to see the complete problem 466 about Concentric Circles, Secant, Congruence, Measurement.

Problem 466: Concentric Circles, Secant, Congruence, Measurement
See also:
Complete Problem 466

Level: High School, SAT Prep, College geometry

Mining Operations: Barrick Gold, Interactive Mind Map

Interactive Mind Map based on Mining Operations of Barrick Gold website.

Graphic organizers are visual representations of knowledge, concepts or ideas.
Click the figure below to see the Interactive Mind Map.

 Mining Operations: Barrick Gold, Interactive Mind Map.
See also:
Mining Operations of BHP Billiton, Interactive Mind Map

Top Mining Companies in the World - Index

Click the figure below to view the index.

See more:
Top Mining Companies

Four of Eight!

Congratulations Paraguay on reaching the World Cup quarter finals (even though it was a deathly boring match and you scraped in on penalties). That makes four of the last eight teams South American, impressive when you think that the continent only sent five and one was only just knocked out by fellow continental Brazil.

South America: Teaching the world how to play since 1930.

News roundup (eclectic brainscatterings grouped together, causing worry about the aggregator's mental health)

An incredibly racist, nauseating piece shows up in Time Magazine today. The rag, its editors and anyone paying money to read this note should be ashamed of any connection to Joel Stein.

The openly Gay Community in Bolivia is braver than most, as the country is still backwards when it comes to sexual emancipation (and not helped by its President's wisecracks about chicken hormones, even if he apologized afterwards and explained it was meant in jest). Bolivia Weekly reports on the La Paz/El Alto Gay Pride parade last weekend in the city and the issues facing its members. Clearly some progress is being made (the parade was well supported and successful) but there's a way to go before Bolivia joins the more enlightened regional countries on LGBT rights.

The Unbearable Lightness of Being a Fund Manager. It turns out that the best performing fund manager over the last 30 years has held more cash than anything else! What the hell do you pay these people for, foolish investorperson?

So apparently, Uribe has been tapping Correa's phone lines. The headline-grabbing part of this scandalette smacks of BS to me, but the chances that DAS has been operating in Quito are more than high. Note the timing, folks, what with Studmuffin wanting to be invited to watch Santos get the sash.

Chile's futbol team will receive a hero's welcome when arriving back home, because they played to the best of their ability and showed great game. England's team decided to schedule their return at 06:20am this morning London time to avoid such hero's welcomes.

We very like post commenter Tim Dees very much:
Tim Dees said... I live in Edison. It's a nice little suburb, and the Indians make it a really cool, unique place.

Fuck you, Joel.
UPDATE 2: Seems Joel has pissed a lot of people off with his bigotry. The WSJ picks up the story, notes the protests and even reports that Time International, the sister publication to Time Magazine, has refused to publish Stein's story in its edition.

Yeah, good question; who ARE the real drug lords?

I'm jumping on the reco-bandwagon for this one. After getting highly recommended by at least two good minds, this author would also like as many eyeballs as possible to read this excellent report on the role of big banks in drugs, written by Michael Smith of Bloomberg. Wells Fargo, Wachovia, BofA, HSBC, Amex, Western Union...darnit Veronica, they're all chowing down at this trough of slush money. Here's an excerpt:

“It’s the banks laundering money for the cartels that finances the tragedy,” says Martin Woods, director of Wachovia’s anti-money-laundering unit in London from 2006 to 2009. Woods says he quit the bank in disgust after executives ignored his documentation that drug dealers were funneling money through Wachovia’s branch network.

“If you don’t see the correlation between the money laundering by banks and the 22,000 people killed in Mexico, you’re missing the point,” Woods says.

Cleansing Dirty Cash

Wachovia is just one of the U.S. and European banks that have been used for drug money laundering. For the past two decades, Latin American drug traffickers have gone to U.S. banks to cleanse their dirty cash, says Paul Campo, head of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s financial crimes unit.

Here's the link again, just to make sure you use it. Now use it.

Chart of the day is...

....the Shanghai Composite, three year chart:

Monday, June 28, 2010

Ecometals (EC.v): Scumbag late-filing insiders strike again

Mark Kesselman (right, pink shirt) along with his wife Liz and another Ecometals
parasite, audit committee chairman William Lamarque

Once upon a time, Mark Leonard Kesselman was CFO of Ecometals (EC.v), so he's clearly a guy that knows about numbers and finances and the way to file accounts properly and do things the right way. He's still a director of Ecometals (and secretary for that matter) which is probably why last week he was called out as a dirty insider-trading scumbag by the British Columbian Securities Commission (BCSC) and had a cease trade order slapped on his trasero by the regulators. Here's the link and here are the contents of the Cease Trade Order, dated June 22nd.
Cease Trade Order
Mark Leonard Kesselman
Section 164 of the Securities Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 418
¶ 1 Mark Leonard Kesselman (Kesselman) is an insider of Ecometals Limited (Ecometals).
¶ 2 Kesselman has made changes in his beneficial ownership of securities of Ecometals and
failed to file the required insider reports within the prescribed time.
¶ 3 Under section 164(1) of the Act, the Executive Director orders that all trading by
Kesselman in the securities of Ecometals cease until:
1. he files the insider reports, completed in accordance with the Act and the
Securities Rules, B.C. Reg. 194/97, and
2. the Executive Director, makes an order under section 164 of the Act revoking this
¶ 4 June 22, 2010

So yet another EC insider caught with his pants down, but today we found out just how naughty Kesselman has been. To rescind the CTO what an offender has to do is file the late trades in question and then ask nicely to be reinstated. Well that's exactly what Kesselman has done today and here below are all the trades he "forgot" to file. At the end of January 2010, Kesselman owned 884,000 shares of Ecometals (EC.v). He then did this:

Mark Kesselman Insider Trade Filings for Ecometals (EC.v)
transaction date filing date Amount Sold price gross proceeds (C$)
05/02/2010 28/06/2010 5,000 0.66 3300
10/02/2010 28/06/2010 45,000 0.6541 29434.5
11/02/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 0.703 7030
18/02/2010 28/06/2010 20,000 0.67 13400
19/02/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 0.72 7200
22/02/2010 28/06/2010 20,000 1.07 21400
22/02/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 0.92 9200
22/02/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 1.05 10500
22/02/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 1.04 10400
22/02/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 0.88 8800
22/02/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 1.12 11200
22/02/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 1.1 11000
23/02/2010 28/06/2010 20,000 1.05 21000
23/02/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 1.06 10600
23/02/2010 28/06/2010 32,700 0.98 32046
23/02/2010 28/06/2010 7,300 0.99 7227
25/02/2010 28/06/2010 19,000 1.05 19950
04/03/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 1 10000
15/03/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 0.79 7900
15/03/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 0.78 7800
16/03/2010 28/06/2010 10,000 0.8 8000
19/03/2010 28/06/2010 110,000 0.75 82500
19/03/2010 28/06/2010 375,000 0.76 285000
19/03/2010 28/06/2010 40,000 0.74 29600
19/03/2010 28/06/2010 5,000 0.77 3850
22/03/2010 28/06/2010 2,000 0.67 1340
22/03/2010 28/06/2010 13,000 0.68 8840
22/03/2010 28/06/2010 37,000 0.69 25530
22/03/2010 28/06/2010 50,000 0.71 35500

That right; starting the 5th February and ending on March 22nd, he sold all he owned in mostly small, systematic selling while EC.v was trading at the high prices brought about by its utter bullshit lies regarding the Zarza project in Ecuador. By the time reality had bitten and the stock had slumped to where it should have been all this time, Kesselman had sold out for the sum total of $739,547.50 in gross proceeds. He filed not a single trade until forced to do so by a Cease Trade Order from the BC Securities Regulators and only now do we get to see what this pussball was doing before the Zarza dusters sank the stock.

We're left to reflect that this insider dumped 884,000 shares onto an unsuspecting audience and made off with nearly three quarters of a million in ill-gotten gains after sucking dry the bunch of greenhorn sheep that actually believed the bullshit hype peddled by this worthless company in 2009 and got suckered in by the liars and thieves that promo'd EC.v on bullboards and in pump'n'dump newsletters. Your humble scribe now awaits notes of apology from the wankers who hatemailed me all through the EC.v pump'n'dump scam just because I had the cojones to call it like it was from start to finish.


Trading Post (clockwork orange edition)

B2Gold ( down 2.3% at $1.70 on better than average volumes. Why is BTO dropping today? Easy; it's because it got the veritable kiss of death from the Can of Corn today when one of the Dreaded Zeds upped target on the company from $1.70 to $2.15. Makumba! Voodoo! Mufa!

Metanor (MTO.v) down 3.3% at $0.58. It's been ten weeks since this humble corner of cyberspace explained why this stock was going nowhere. Since that time it's.....gone nowhere. DYODD, dude.

Avalon Rare Metals ( UNCH at $2.19 on normal volumes. AVL was featured in IKN60, out yesterday.

Minera Andes ( down a penny at $0.86. What does "total underachiever that's been way overhyped by The Can of Corn" mean to you? Why should that phrase suddenly get a mention here? YOU BE THE JUDGE!

On the rebound

Here's how South American GDPs have rebounded in the first quarter of 2010, compared to the same quarter of 2009 (and Ecuador hasn't published yet, so no number there). The main source material is this report out of the Paraguay Central Bank (yes, this humble scribe really is wonky enough to read Paraguay macro-stuff...sad, innit?)

click to enlarge

So will somebody please tell Peru that it isn't even on the podium, let alone a freakin' miracle? And before all the Venezuela doomsters pipe up, it should be noted that Venezuela has just passed Argentina to become LatAm's third biggest economy (after Braz and Mex). It was also growing its GDP in 1q09, something places like Brazil and Chile failed to do.

Brazil's Presidential election: Dilma Leads!

Here's a slightly edited excerpt from IKN60, out yesterday.

Brazil’s latest Presidential opinion poll

On June 26th (i.e. yesterday), the first survey was published (13) giving Worker Party (PT) candidate Dilma Rousseff an outright lead in the opinion polls for the November Presidential election. CNI/Ibope called voter intention for Rousseff, heiress apparent in Lula’s PT, at 40%, with main opposition candidate José Serra at 35%. A long way behind in third comes Green Party candidate Marina Silva with 9% of voter intention. Margin of error on the poll was put at +/- 2%.

This chart shows the evolution of voter intention over the last nine months and the clear dynamic is that of a growth in support for Dilma Rousseff while Serra’s numbers have remained basically pat.

Chart of the day is.....

...crude oil weekly candles.

This is the one that says "just wait a cotton pickin' minute with all that deflation talk". Oil was brushing $80/bbl last week and anything above $70 will keep the supplying nations happy enough. So with all this doom and gloom talk around the market, would anyone like to explain to me why crude has stayed stubbornly high? And no, it's not a store of value... just a store of speculation.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Silvio Berlusconi and Klishtina's ass

Here's the official G20 photo of attending dignitaries, taken near that FakeLake yesterday.

(click to enlarge)

As you can see, most of them know where to look, but.... of them just can't help himself. Jeesh dude, lay off the double Cialis one time, willyaz? My thanks to reader PE who left the breadcrumb trail in this post's comments section.

The IKN Weekly, out now

porteños saben

IKN60 has just been sent to subscribers. Just thought I'd tell you.

Bad news for David Blaine

David Blaine's amazing world record of spending 42 days inside a box while doing nothing except watching the world go by has just been beaten by Wayne Rooney.

Meanwhile, every home should have one of these:

Stupid isn't confined to the right wing

When it comes to Latin America gringo lefties show time and again that they can match their opponents, dumbass for dumbass. Take it away, Liberal Democrat County Supervisor Peggy West of Milwaukee.

So tell me again how we're supposed to take anything you guys say up there seriously?

It clearly didn't cross the line: photo evidence

WaPo, the paper that pretends US foreign policy in LatAm, has no freakin' idea as to who Evo Morales is

A great little post and piece of sleuthing from Jakob over at Maladjusted (and thanks due to that bodega owner) . Click this link right here and see for yourself just how much of TEH STOOOPID there is in US media over LatAm affairs.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Mining Operations: BHP Billiton, Interactive Mind Map

Interactive Mind Map based on Mining Operations of BHP Billiton website.

Graphic organizers are visual representations of knowledge, concepts or ideas.
Click the figure below to see the Interactive Mind Map.

 Mining Operations: BHP Billiton, Interactive Mind Map.
See also:
Mining Operations of BHP Billiton, Interactive Mind Map
Here's a link to the most bizarre thing I've ever seen on the interwebnetpipes. If you want to know more about the guy and the story behind this large dose of Kafka, here's the necessary wiki page.

Problem 465: Square, Arc, Angle, 90 Degrees, Measurement

Geometry Problem
Click the figure below to see the complete problem 465 about Square, Arc, Angle, 90 Degrees, Measurement.

Problem 465: Square, Arc, Angle, 90 Degrees, Measurement
See also:
Complete Problem 465

Level: High School, SAT Prep, College geometry

one in, three to go

Luis Suarez scored both today and the 2nd was a pearl

Congrats to Uruguay for making the last eight. We know that at least one other South American team will join them (as Chile plays Brazil Monday that's one guaranteed spot for the continent), so let's see if Argentina (vs Mexico tomorrow) and Paraguay (vs Japan Tuesday) can fill other spaces.

UPDATE: Downtown Montevideo this afternoon. You kind of get the feeling that it mattered to the Charrúas, dontcha?

Child poverty in Latin America

If you haven't read Structurally Maladjusted's excellent post on childhood poverty in Latin America, then do so. The argument is solid, the charts are easy on the eye and wholly clarifiying, the statistical database is verifiable and of the best quality.

The link is right here. It's an excellent job of work and what the interwebnetpipes are all about, so go read.

A room with a view (part 9)

This week's shot comes from Shanghai, China and reader 'BR'.

Here's the note that came with the photo:
"(This is) the chill out area outside my building. Not exactly a room with a view, but thought this would intrigue you. India's not the only place with smoking babies! Look at the smile on this face."

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Friday OT: Alabama 3; Mao Tse Tung Says

One of the best live performances ever witnessed by a camera and then stuck on yootoob.

This is mindblowingly good, really. Who else could combine Chairman Mao, the reverend Jim Jones, acid house, Country&Western, a freaked out Bodhran player and the charisma to send a crowd totally apeshit? MUST. SEE. VIDEO.

Daaarling thanks and air-kisses to 10%.

In Gold We Trust

Gold Porn!

Earlier this week A. Person kindly sent over a 71 page report published by The Ernst Group (bigboy money house in Austria) in June 2010 called "In Gold We Trust". To give you an idea of the yummy goldbug content on offer, here are the bullet points from the front page:

  • Gold outsparkling other assets for the 9th consecutive year
  • The bark is repaired, but the wood stays rotten
  • Soft metal, hard money: the REMONETISATION has started
  • Why gold is no bubble
  • The creation of money from the perspective of the Austrian School of Economics
  • Risk/return profile of gold investments remains very favorable
  • Gold mining shares on attractive levels
  • Central banks have adjusted their attitude towards gold
  • Next phase of the bull market: Parabolic phase ahead?
  • Next target price at USD 1,600
  • At the end of the parabolic trend phase we expect at least USD 2,300/ounce

Yes indeed, this is serious gold love-in material and, snark aside, it really does do a good job in putting forward the gold bull rationale with decent arguments and statistical structure. You too can download your 1.67Mb copy by clicking this link right here. Goldbugs will lap up every word, but the more normally-adjusted will also benefit greatly from reading this report too. Enjoy.

Chile versus Spain

Apart from a few snarkybits and quick references, this humble corner of cyberspace hasn't been too heavy on The World Cup so far. This has been deliberate, as there are a squillion different places to go if you want to be bored by some dumbass pontificating on the importance of it all.

But today we make an exception to preview a match coming up in five hours and forty-five minutes from now. Spain meet Chile in the last set of group matches and the basic story, assuming Switzerland beat Honduras....not a dead cert but let's just assume, is that Spain needs to win to go through at the expense of Chile, while Chile needs a win or a draw to send Spain home (one of the pre-tournament favourites). Both sides play attractive, quick, attacking football and won friends and plaudits in their qualifying games. Spain are the current European champions and really have a wonderful crop of players right now. Meanwhile, Chile have improved in leaps and bounds under the management of Marcelo Bielsa, who is for many people the best manager out there today.

Bottom line: The match today has the makings of an all-time classic. Now for sure footy fans will know very well that games rarely live up to this kind of billing....but all the gotta watch this one because it might, just might be as good as that. And when it's played at its maximum expression there's no more beautiful game in the world than Association Football.

Update: It wasn't a classic, but at least Chile get through thanks to Honduras. It was also the first time this tournament that a South American team lost a match. So Portugal vs Spain and Brazil vs Chile in the last 16 round. This World Cup is now hotting up.

Chart of the day is..., daily candle.
Seriously, what do you look for in a bullish chart? You might be averse to gold, you may love the stuff, it may even leave you cold....but jeesh, even a charting dumbass such as myself can strip out the emotional factors, look at that above and say "100% total no brainer".

That's yer last warnin', laddies and lassies.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Junior Mining Corporate Re-Naming Pronunciation Question of the Day

This humble scribe hears that the merger of Linear Gold ( and Apollo Gold ( is now voted through and the new company is with us. Here's the NR:
Press Release Source: Apollo Gold Corporation On Thursday June 24, 2010, 6:51 pm EDT

DENVER & HALIFAX, Nova Scotia--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Apollo Gold Corporation (TSX: APG - News) (NYSE Amex: AGT) (“Apollo”) and Linear Gold Corp. (TSX: LRR - News) (“Linear”) report that their shareholders overwhelmingly approved the business combination (“the Merger”) of the two companies to form Brigus Gold Corp. (“Brigus Gold”) at their respective meetings of shareholders earlier today continues here

So, it only remains to be seen how this new name "Brigus" is pronounced. Does it
a) rhyme with "Bribe Us"? (and why that little phrase sprung to mind is totally beyond me)

b) rhyme with "Biggus"? (as in the famous Monty Python scene)

Inquiring minds, etc.....

Friday AM: This from reader 'MP':

I believe it is pronounced /br-gəs/ ; as in bogus...

Mining in Peru 2009-2011

Video and News
Mining in Peru: Top Mining Companies, Projects & Prospects 2009-2011 by Peru Top Publications.

Click the figure below to see the video and news.

Mining in Peru 2009-2011.
See more:
Mining in Peru 2009-2011

Trading Post (Arrivederci edition)

Capella Resources (KPS.v) down 7.1% at $0.13. I note today that this was actually picked out by The Can of Corn for its 2010 watchlist at the beginning of the year. Now 70% down from Jan 1st, it clearly would have paid The Dumbass Zeds to have done a bit more DD on the stock and to have found out just how scammy it really is. IKN knew.

Constitution Mining (CMIN.ob) down 5.8% at $0.73 and word getting out about the sneaky backdoor financing, it seems. This stock is worth much less.

Great Panther Silver ( down 2.8% at $0.80. So how's that breakout going, greenhorns? IKN's best advice for those who still think this stock is the world's next shiny happy tenbagger is:

Learn how to read a freakin' balance sheet one time, willyaz?

Seriously folks. there are so many self-proclaimed junior mining experts out there who clearly have absolutely no understanding whatesoever about the basics of financial reporting, it's scary. The same people that insisted an über-dog-with-fleas like ECU Silver ( was a company on a strong financial footing in early 2009 now swear blind that GPR is some sort of financial example for us all, when anyone who actually knows what to look for can see the direct opposite is true. We know that Bill Murphy is a shamefaced bullshitter, but want we want to know know is whether Mexico Mike is ever going to apologize to the poor saps that he's been leading up the garden path all this time.

A Death in Sion

What happens when oil companies move into the Amazon jungle.

The above video is not recommended viewing for any gringo in denial.

Seventy-five years ago today

El Zorzal Criollo died on the 24th June 1935 in a plane collision at Medellín airport, Colombia.

¡Gardel Presente!

Good news for BP investors

BP (BP) longs might have seen their stock price cut in half in 2010, but it could have been worse: They could have been long Gammon Gold (GRS) ( instead.

After all, they might look the same but at least the BP longs picked up that 82c quarterly dividend in Feb. C'mon guys, join in the chorus!

Coca production: go read Hemispheric Brief

Here's how today's daily digest at Hemispheric Brief starts:

The annual reports on coca cultivation and cocaine production from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) are atop the agenda this morning. Just the Facts has a great breakdown on all the new data, writing that the headline of this year’s reports is “Peru's significant increase and Colombia's decrease in coca cultivation in 2009.” In fact, Peru is on its way to becoming the world’s top producer of coca (retaking that distinction from Colombia) according to the UNODC – a charge Peruvian President Alan García vehemently rejected Wednesday. [García did, however, maintain that his country has been the victim of “the Plan Colombia effect” – a reference to the idea that a decline in coca production in neighboring Colombia has done little more than push the crop across the border.]

JFS does a neat job of summing up the issues and provides all the links you want, too. For all your coca leaf requirements, this humble corner of cyberspace thoroughly recommends Hemispheric Brief today.

Chart of the day is...

.....the gold/silver ratio (GSR), three year period.

Is this the new normal? Once upon a very long time ago (three years back), people expected the GSR to fluctuate around 50X and 55X. Nowadays 60X gets trading pencils sharpened and the day to day fluctuations that seem to revolve around 65X are taken as par for the course.

Personally I do think it's the new normal and the change has been in gold, not silver. Perhaps it's becoming normal (at last) to consider gold as part of an investment portfolio, or even a trading portfolio thanks to GLD, the enormously successful ETF. Perhaps it's also becoming normal to question the things that were never questioned before, thanks to the continued ZIRPing from the moneymeisters as well as other influences.

Just a couple of general, musing reflections on this Thursday morning. Hope you have a good day.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Constitution Mining (CMIN.ob) is diluting your ass again, suckaz

Here's the link to the latest SEC filing from this scamjob, which notifies us that the company wants to raise $8.125m via a dilutive share+option financing deal. There's no public announcement of the pricings of the deal yet, but I'm going to hazard a guess at 65c a unit because the minimum investment for any poor sap that gets suckered into this madness is $6,500 (they've managed to find nine takers so far for a total of a touch over $300k). That 65c number might be wrong though, so best check.

Meanwhile, not a word in public from CMIN.ob that this financing has been open since Monday, a typical scamsters trick to leave people in the dark for as long as possible.