‘That’s a Wrap’
By Rod Blake
Over 5,000 resource sector investors in the vicinity of Vancouver were fortunate to attend the Vancouver Resource Investment Conference (VRIC) to engage with and gain the insight of many resource company personnel as well as related speakers and panels.
The way I see it – The VRIC generally kicks off the resource investment season for the year. People come together to discuss and research resource investments. Companies present their stories and speakers give their points of view. After a couple of lean covid-19 years it was nice to see the crowds back and feel the enthusiasm of the event. This will hopefully spill over into the first few months of 2023.
Cambridge, Ontario based ATS Corporation ‘ATS-T’ reported an existing global automotive customer had given its Industrial Automotive business an additional US$119.9-million order for North American automated battery assembly systems.
Lithium Americas Corp. ‘LAC-T’ stock rose by $3.99 or 13.54% to $33.46 after the Vancouver, BC based mineral developer announced that General Motors Co. ‘GM-N’ had agreed to invest US$650 million to help develop the company’s flagship Thacker Pass Lithium project in Humboldt County, Nevada.
This as the prise of lithium dropped to a new 8-month low of US$69,423-per-tonne.
Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd. ‘NDM-T’ & ‘NAK-N’ shares’ dropped by $0.035 or 10.94% to $0.285 and the company took another shot to the chin after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) once again determined that the Vancouver, BC based mineral developer would not be allowed to develop its prized Pebble Copper/Gold Deposit in Southwest Alaska.
The price of Minera Alamos Inc. ‘MAI-V’ stock fell by $0.045 or 10.47% to $0.385 after the start-up gold miner’s 4th-quarter gold production from the company’s Santana mine in Mexico failed to live up to the Street’s expectations.
This as the price of gold bullion rose to a new 9-month high of US$1,951-an-ounce.
And the U.S dollar Index or ‘DXY’ fell to a new 9-month low of 101.14.
Vancouver, BC based mining giant Teck Resources Ltd. ‘TECK.B-T’ & ‘TECK-N’ projected that its global copper production would increase by some 45% in 2023 to a range of 390 – 445-thousand tonnes.
TC Energy Corp. ‘TRP-T & N’ shares’ fell by $3.22 or 5.63% to $54.11 after the Calgary, Alberta based energy company announced that the completion costs for the very important Coastal GasLink Pipeline in northern BC had increased by another 30% to $14.5 billion.
Europe’s largest petroleum company, London based Shell plc ‘SHEL-N’ – sighting Russian caused crude oil price shocks – reported profits that almost doubled in 2022 to US$39.9 billion.
The price of natural gas fell to a new 13/4-year low of US$2.39/mmbtus.
Meanwhile, the price of uranium rose to a new 3-month high of US$51.20-per-pound.
The closely followed Baker Hughes Petroleum Rig Count reported the number of active American drilling rigs fell by 12-rigs in the past week to 759, up by 146 from this time last year. Up north – the number of Canadian active rigs rose by 2-rigs to 249, an increase of 31 in the past year.
Lumber rose to a new 3-month high of US$524-per-1,000 board feet.
The TSX Venture Exchange rose to a new 3-month high of 630 and the senior TSX Composite Index climbed to a new 7-month high of 20,767.
Down south – the NASDAQ Exchange rose to a new 5-month high of 12,201 while the S&P 500 Index rose to new 6-month high of 4,180.
For the Week – the DJI lost 0.15% to 33,926 while the S&P 500 rose by 1.60% to 4,136 and the NASDAQ gained 3.31% to 12,007. In Canada – the TSX rose by 0.21% to 20,758 while the TSX Venture lost 0.32% to 620. The CBOE Volatility Index or VIX was down by 0.97% to 18.33.
With currencies – the Canadian dollar fell by 0.75% to US$0.7456 and the U.S. dollar ‘DXY’ rose by 0.96% to 102.92.
With commodities – gold bullion lost 3.27% to US$1,865 as silver lost 5.30% to US$22.34, with copper falling by 3.79% to US$4.06, and lithium off by 1.83% to US$69,423. Crude oil lost 7.46% to US$73.39 and natural gas fell by 8.02% to US$2.39 while uranium rose by 1.89% to US$51.20. Meanwhile, lumber gained 1.01% to US$500. Overall – the CRB Commodities Index fell by 4.61% to 290.
And Finally – How fast is the back-up infrastructure for Canada’s electric vehicle rollout progressing? According to the Environment Department the federal government has subsidized the installation of 34,500 electric chargers across Canada to date and plans to install 50,000 more chargers by 2027.