Someone famously once said, “The best qualification of a prophet is to have a good memory.” When trying to identify potential opportunities within the resource sector, it’s always handy to have some grasp of history. In the case of our vanadium call about 12 months ago, we utilised our awareness... Show More
There’s an overwhelming sense of déjà vu as far as the gold market is concerned. Two years ago during December 2015, we witnessed the first US Fed rate hike since the 2008 GFC – a 25-basis point increase. This followed years of promises, threats and jawboning by the US Federal... Show More
Given recent headlines and speculation with respect to commodity prices, I thought it worthwhile to outline my views on the near-term picture. Overall, I remain very optimistic with respect to prices and demand. In particular, recent positive Chinese commodity demand data and outcomes from the recent Chinese Communist Party Congress,... Show More
In this note I’ll provide an overview of vanadium, what it is and the opportunity that presents itself, along with three ASX-listed vanadium equities at various levels of maturity. Show More
Commodity prices have defied pessimism and rallied solidly over recent months on the back of improved Chinese economic prospects, stability on the European political front, some degree of acclimatisation to Trump-related government volatility in the USA - and a weaker US dollar. Show More
It's worth reflecting upon the staggering level of international debt. Financial crises are invariably caused by debt. The Bank of International Settlement (BIS) has recently warned that a new financial crisis is looming. Part of this is simply its job and it's routinely warning against this. But it does have... Show More
Gold’s best friends at present are the US Federal Reserve and Donald Trump. The US dollar is weakening as the opposition of two more Republican senators to the US healthcare bill this week meant the measure is effectively dead in its current form. Show More
Anyone even remotely associated with the resource sector is well acquainted with the concept of patience. One interesting quote that probably sums up what’s required is as follows: “Patience is not the ability to wait, but the ability to keep a good attitude while waiting.” Nowhere is this more relevant... Show More
Despite the skeptics, OPEC is doing exactly what it said it would do – which was to dramatically rein in oil production. Global oil output plunged during January as OPEC and non-OPEC producers curbed supply to accelerate a market rebalancing, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). Oil supplies fell... Show More
It’s worthwhile reflecting on the impact of Donald Trump’s election victory on commodities so far. In the immediate aftermath, we witnessed a surge in commodity prices pretty much across the board, with the obvious exception of gold – viewed by some as a likely laggard investment in the growth-fuelled Trump... Show More
Cardinal Resources was one of the best-performing emerging gold plays of 2016, after having invested considerable amounts of time, energy and money in exploring, appraising and steadily de-risking its multi-million ounce Namdini gold project in Ghana to an acceptable level. All of this activity happened at just the right time... Show More
This time last year copper was in serious trouble - it had just hit its lowest level since 2009. What followed was a period of consolidation until the US presidential election in November, when prices lifted to 18-month highs on the back of Donald Trump's victory - and bullishness about... Show More
Uranium has been the most-hated commodity since 2011 - and the Global X Uranium ETF, which tracks global uranium miners, is down by 90% over the last six years. But since the Trump election victory, international uranium stocks have soared by 59%. The market is speculating that the Trump administration... Show More
With A$ gold prices continuing their strong 15-year run, it's interesting that there are relatively few new gold sector production opportunities of reasonable scale available to investors at the present time. Most budding gold hopefuls have already made the transition to production status over recent years, with the balance having... Show More
There's further encouraging news for the outlook for industrial metals in 2017. The World Bank in its just-released January 2017 Commodity Markets Outlook is forecasting strong gains for industrial commodities such as energy and metals during 2017, due to tightening supply and strengthening demand. The Bank has raised its metals... Show More
As a follow up to my most recent commentary on gold and interest rates, I have attached what I consider to be two very interesting slides. The first relates to the net positioning of two of the most widely traded long-term US Treasury futures - 10-year and 5-year Treasuries. It... Show More
Most pundits are universal in viewing an interest rate increase as negative for gold. As gold is a non-yielding asset, this therefore is negative for gold - or so the narrative goes. The key however is not rising interest rates per se, but the 'real' interest rate - that is,... Show More
The latest data shows that Chinese investors traded a record volume of commodity futures last year – another factor reinforcing the view that heavyweight investors have re-entered the commodity scene. Combined aggregate trading volume on the Shanghai Futures Exchange and the Dalian and Zhengzhou Commodity Exchanges jumped by 27% during... Show More
Earlier this week I wrote about the impact of funds buying back into commodities during 2016, including record net long positions that have driven the LME index of prices up by 36% since 1 January 2016. Well, there's further solid evidence of growing fund interest in commodities, with the latest... Show More
Metalicity is one of the rare ASX-listed situations that offer investors exposure to both zinc and lithium. Why is this interesting? Well, zinc was the second-best performing commodity last year (up 88%), behind only coking coal (up 250%). Zinc is being driven by major supply-side factors in the form of... Show More
A great emerging petroleum story, the Cuban and WA stuff is really exciting.
Hi Joe, the bottom line is that there is a growing number of ASX-listed vanadium opportunities in the micro-cap space. There are risks associated with all of these companies, not so much in terms of their resource, but more to do with how their projects will ultimately be funded and where the vanadium (if it's mined), will end up. Furthermore, some companies like AVL are quite advanced in terms of a vertically-integrated strategy, as well as discussions with end-user groups of various types. Others aren't so well advanced. Some companies also promote themselves better than others too. It's a market, so there's always a discrepancy in respective values.
Hi Paul, the Triton story is an interesting story, but they have had their fair share of issues over recent years, but are looking to turn things around under new leadership.
Largo Resources is a TSX-listed vanadium producer with a market cap of $1.6b. My research focuses only on ASX-listed juniors, typically with a market value under $100m with emerging projects. Largo has performed very well share price wise, so it's story is being well received in North America.
The just commenced drilling program at the Obelisk prospect in WA will be well worth watching.
Hi Alex, it's an important commodity that's lived in the shadow of graphite, lithium, vanadium for some time. A lot of it is produced as a by-product from copper and nickel operations, whilst there are a few dedicated cobalt operations - but typically in higher sovereign risk places like Uganda.
Hi Alex, it seems to be pretty much related to a strong market move in all actual uranium-producing stocks, including ERA for example on the domestic market, plus a host of overseas players. You're right re uranium - no one will believe it until they see it - it's been in the doghouse for so long.
Orion is a great story - especially given how relatively advanced things are, but still with a lot of exploration upside. I believe the MD Errol Smart is presenting at Africa Down Under on Thursday.
I agree to some extent with your near-term forecast. Nothing goes up in a straight line and the likelihood always was that Brexit wasn't going to be as scary for markets as the pessimists made out. However, whilst traders might look to exit or reduce gold positions near-term, I think any pullbacks will be viewed as a buying opportunity by longer-term investors. With interest rates likely to stay low (at zero or even negative levels) then gold will perform solidly.
It reminds me of all the hullabaloo surrounding ‘The Y2K bug’ – lots of hysteria at first, but in the end it all passed without any lasting consequences....a storm in a teacup ultimately....
On Does Brexit matter? -
Thank you for your kind words Patrick. Yes, it's important to distinguish between the commodities and their various outlooks. The big picture for most commodities looks quite positive, but the bulks are a different story.
It's not easy finding good, specific zinc exposures James - a legacy of past failures and the metals being out of favour for so long.
I think there are some quite attractive exploration/emerging production opportunities on the ASX James. Many of these are indirect exposures, i.e. zinc is just one component of their commodity exposure, and these include KBL Mining (ASX: KBL), Rox Resources (ASX: RXL) and TNG Ltd (ASX: TNG).
It's a Ponzi scheme James that could have major financial repercussions. A couple of contacts in China told me this morning that this is much bigger than a once-off incident - they claim it's widespread and in some instances commodities have been lent against tens of times.
James, the deposits at Yamarna are likely to be large, so there will be the economies of scale necessary for a remote project like this. Bear in mind though that there are different scales of remote - we're not talking about deepest, darkest Africa here. I believe GOR will initially announce a Gruyere resource of between 1.5M - 2.0M oz grading 1.1g/t - 1.5g/t Au, which in turn could potentially support a 150,000 oz p.a. production scenario. The key here is scale and it's likely that this will end up being a +5Moz gold belt. The company already has Sumitomo as a JV partner, so in effect it already has a major on board for half its project.
It will be really interesting to see what Sandfire comes up with in their drilling programs. The sniffs are already encouraging based on TLM's previous work and SFR's initial survey work. Having a motivated, cashed-up partner in the form of SFR is hugely important for TLM. Don't forget TLM also has cash reserves of $16m.
Correct James. Norton Gold Fields is also undertaking a similar growth strategy based on expansion from a central processing facility. Ultimately, this all means firmer gold prices will be required to underpin future gold development, given China and India's continued growth in consumption.
That's it Rod, although the share price has taken a bit of a battering over the past 6 months as some investors have obviously grown impatient waiting for Sandfire to get cracking.
Nice strategy. The next bubble to burst - SMSFs.
Not just Japan but the world over, easy money from central banks has spurred record sharemarkets and over-valued property, as speculators chase returns. The innocent victims being left behind are the mums and dads that did the right thing and saved and put their money into the bank. The scary stat out of the US is that it's taken $5 of stimulus to generate $1 of growth.
Absolutely Jordan, the shift in gold from west to east will continue. Investors in the west are fuelling property and equity booms with all of the cheap money that's been made available by central banks as they chase returns, with a lack of appreciation of risk.
Interesting reading and thanks for sharing. A significant proportion of shale oil production in the US is economic only if base-case oil prices remain high. It's certainly added to production volumes but it requires a robust price to be viable. Predictions in some quarters of oil prices falling to $60 or even $40 a barrel won't happen.
One imagines that it's primary benefit will be economic via freight use, but it's also likely to be an important passenger route.
Let's hope so James. It starts with the big guys and filters down. Also demonstrates that there's fabulous value at the smaller end with companies that have kept active despite the gloom.
Yes, CCU has had its problems but is still the best ASX production opportunity. Investigator Resources (ASX: IVR) is a promising exploration play, but still a fair way from production status. Safest bet at present is probably to look at a silver ETF.
Thanks Jordan. Yes, history tends to repeat itself. I read an interesting recent article by someone in the US who was finishing their journalism degree at the time of the dot-com crash in 2000 - she says it's eerily familiar now to how it was back in 2000.
Correct Jordan. Must have had an effect!
Hi Alex, they're planning on using the existing Mt Garnet plant, which has accelerated the whole timeline. They're finalising access to the plant with their Chinese major shareholder, which bought the plant last year.
You can fool some of the people, but not all of them. US Mint gold coin sales have hit a two-year high. The ordinary folk know what's going on - and what lies ahead.
They are hopelessly addicted to stimulus....
James, Jameson Resources appears to be very well run and importantly its projects are coking coal (not thermal coal), so hence more attractive from a price and market perspective. The projects are also close to essential infrastructure, which is a huge plus for any bulk commodity project - and this sets it apart from most of its peers. Lots of project activity too which should help drive market interest.