Market Update & Important Indicators
U.S. stocks rallied Thursday, as a rebound in oil prices and upbeat company news helped push the Dow into positive territory for the year. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 160 points, or 0.9%, in midday trading to 17834. With those gains, it is up 0.1% for 2015. The S&P 500 gained 16 points, or 0.8%, to 2057, and Nasdaq Composite Index added 32 points, or 0.7%, to 4749.Rising crude-oil prices fuelled gains in materials and energy stocks. Materials shares led the S&P 500 higher with a gain of 2.2%. Energy stocks outperformed as U.S. crude-oil futures rose 4% to $50.39/bbl.
Greece stocks sold off on Thursday after the European Central Bank restricted liquidity to Greek banks, while the broader European stock markets got a boost from the rally in oil prices. That news spurred hopes the antiausterity Syriza-led government would reach a debt deal with international lenders before Greece's bailout program expires on February 28. However, hopes for an imminent deal were dashed late Wednesday, when the ECB said Greek banks can no longer use the country's sovereign debt as collateral for ECB-provided liquidity.
Stocks in Shanghai gave up early gains to finish lower Thursday, despite the latest easing measure by China's central bank. The Shanghai Composite Index lost 1.2% to 3136.5, after popping up as much as 2.4% in the morning. Australia's S&P ASX 200 enjoyed its 11th consecutive gain, up 0.6% at 5811.0.
Metals on the LME were generally up with the exception of tin and lead which fell 1.2% and 0.2% respectively. Copper continued its rally, up 0.2% to US$2.60/lb, while gold was down slightly, losing 0.4% to US$1265/oz. The AUD/USD is trading at 0.78.
Thought for the Day
Nickel sector supplying exploration spark
The balance sheets of the ASX’s Nickel Sector have improved as nickel prices in AUD terms have recovered from 2011-2013 lows. This has reinvigorated exploration, which for many, had been scaled back in the low price environment. Dollars in the ground has led to some exciting discoveries.
Panoramic Resources (PAN) Schmitz: hope of life for Lanfranchi
Although early days, recent intercepts into a down plunge extension of the Schmitz orebody looks prospective for Lanfranchi mine life extension. Three intercepts of >5% nickel ~300m from existing mine infrastructure bode well for a near-term ore source. The 300m x 100m EM plate associated with the intercepts could represent a lode of ~20-25kt contained nickel, accessible through minimal development cost (Argonaut est. <$6m).
Mincor Resources (MCR) Prospect for multiple mines and mining fronts
MCR has had exceptional success at the drill-bit with the Cassini and Voyce prospects both showing prospect of being new mines in coming years. Intercepts include 4.9m @ 6.4% and 6.4m @ 7.2% (true width) at Cassini and 7.6m @ 7.7% at Voyce. The prospect of doubling production from the Miitel mine is fast becoming a reality with recent intercepts including 3m @ 3.5% Ni and EM plates connecting the Burnett 1 and 2 lodes, boding well for a development scenario at Miitel North. In addition, the first hole into Durkin North as part of a Resource infill program hit 2.4m @ 6.5% Ni.
Sirius Resources (SIR) About the Crux of it
SIR is about to commence its second hole into the Crux prospect, 70km southwest of the world class Nova deposit. The first diamond hole was very encouraging, returning the “right geology” and evidence of disseminated sulphides at ~200m depth below very strong surface nickel anomalism. The target area below Crux is approximately 12km2 and Argonaut believes that further drilling and down-hole EM surveys will be vital to vector in on this prospect which has a “lot of smoke”. Crux could be the next Nova.
Recent Contacts & Presentations
Northern Star (NST), Doray Minerals (DRM), Troy Resources (TRY), Gold Road Resources (GOR), Saracen Mineral Holdings Limited (SAR), Beadell Resources Limited (BDR), Resolute Mining Limited (RSG), RTG Mining (RTG), Otto Energy Limited (OEL), Peninsula Energy Limited (PEN), Sandfire Resources NL (SFR), Atrum Coal (ATU), Empired (EPD), DTI Group (DTI), Austal (ASB), TFS Corporation (TFC), Pioneer Credit (PNC), IMF Bentham (IMF)