‘That’s a Wrap’
By Rod Blake
The new trading week began on an optimistic note for resource investors following the release of the federal government’s Canadian Critical Minerals Strategy that stated federal regulatory departments would work closely with their provincial counterparts in an effort to fast track the development of the nation’s critical minerals sector.
The way I see it – corporate phone lines in Calgary must have been buzzing as the petroleum industry discussed how this Liberal government – after years of throwing roadblocks at most every petroleum initiative – openly endorses the critical mineral industry and vows to fast track projects.
Pembina Pipeline Corp. ‘PPL – T’ & ‘PBA-N’ released the Calgary, Alberta based company’s guidance for 2023 which included among other things – a projected increase in EBITDA earnings of about 5%.
Sabre Gold Mines Corp. ‘SGLD-T’ arranged a $680-thousand financing to help advance the Vancouver, BC based junior miner’s Copperstone Gold Project in Arizona and the Brewery Creek Gold Project in Yukon.
Mining deals, both good or bad, have consequences – and just over one month after the Gold Fields Ltd. ‘GFI-N & J’ takeover of Yamana Gold Inc. ‘YRI-T’ & ‘AUY-N’ fell through, – the South African gold miner announced that Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Chris Griffith would be stepping down at the end of this year.
Gold bullion rose to a new 5-month high of US$1,811-an-ounce, while silver rose to a new 7-month high of US$23.84-an-ounce.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) warned that Russian sanctions and other supply constraints will cause global crude oil production to struggle to meet a rising demand that will accelerate by some 2.2-million barrels per day in 2023.
TC Energy Corp. ‘TRP-T & N’ restarted part of the important 600-thousand barrel per day Keystone pipeline that was not affected by the untimely 14,000 barrel oil spill earlier this month.
Meanwhile, the closely followed Baker Hughes Petroleum Rig Count reported the number of active American drilling rigs fell once again by 4-rigs in the past week to 776, up by 197 from this time last year. Across the line – the number of Canadian active rigs dropped by 3-rigs to 199, an increase of 32 in the past year.
Northland Power Inc. ‘NPI-T’ enhances its strategic partnership with Gentari International Renewables Pte. Ltd. by selling the Malaysian company 49% of Northland’s interest in Tiawan’s Hai Long offshore wind project for some $800-million.
Marimaca Copper Corp. ‘MARI-T’ shares’ rose by $0.16 or 5.44% to $3.10 after the Vancouver, BC company reported assays from drill hole MAD-22 that averaged 240-metres of 1.01% copper per tonne from its Marimaca Oxide Deposit in Chile.
Meanwhile – Patriot Battery Metals ‘PMET-T’ & PMT-A’ reported 113.4 metres of 1.61% lithium oxide (Li2O) from drill hole CV22-066 taken from the company’s Corvette Property in the James Bay Region of Quebec.
And Frontier Lithium Inc. ‘FL-V’ announced 126.8 metres of 1.31% Li2O from diamond drill hole PL-077-22 at the company’s PAK lithium project near Red Lake, Ontario.
The shareholders of First Quantum Minerals Ltd. ‘FM-T. were disappointed on word that due to a breakdown in negotiations – the Government of Panama had ordered the Toronto, Ontario based miner to suspend operations at the Cobre Panamá copper mine in that Central American country.
Lumber had another bad week falling $23 or 5.60% to once again test a new 3-year low of US$388 per-1,000-board-feet (/mbf).
For the most part – the resource markets trading quietly going into the yearend holiday season.
For the Week – the DJI lost 1.66% to 32,920 as the S&P 500 fell by 2.08% to 3,852 and the NASDAQ dropped 2.73% to 10,705. In Canada – the TSX fell by 2.53% to 19,443 and the TSX Venture lost 0.35% to 576. The CBOE Volatility Index or VIX lost 0.92% to 22.62.
With currencies – the Canadian dollar was off by 0.37% to US$0.7300 and the U.S. dollar ‘DXY’ fell by 0.27% to 104.70.
With commodities – gold bullion lost 0.17% to US$1,793 as silver fell by 0.98% to US$23.20, and copper dropped by 2.08% to US$3.77, with lithium down by 1.65% to US$80,623 and uranium lower by 0.72% to US$48.15. Crude oil gained 4.09% to US$74.29 as natural gas improved by 4.91% to US$6.62. This while lumber lost 5.60% to US$388. Overall – the CRB Commodities Index gained 3.47% to 298.
And Finally – After what seems like too many years of trying to be politically correct, a recent Post Media-Leger poll has found that 70% of Canadians now feel it is appropriate to wish someone “Merry Christmas” once again instead of the more impartial Happy Holidays. So, as I will be away next week and in keeping with the times – I wish you all a very Merry Christmas!