Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Ascent of Man


I was poking around Pirate Bay for something to watch tonight, and I stumbled across the old documentary "The Ascent of Man".

For free on Youtube.

See for example, episode 1.

I won't post the rest out of respect for those with poor bandwidth.

"Murfreesboro mosque controversy"

I saw a good documentary on the Murfreesboro mosque controversy a few months ago... I sincerely doubt in was on CNN since it was good.

Nevertheless, here's the CNN doc on the topic, in case you haven't heard about it yet.

I personally don't have an opinion, because my moral code says not to waste my time on crap going on in another country, especially when neither side are my own kin or associates.

Didn't believe that? Okay, me neither. Fine. Yeah, the people in Murfreesboro do come off as ignorant. Just like I'm sure the people in most small towns in the Islamic world come off as brutally fucking ignorant.

Anyway... here's some commentary on the topic.

Red State Update are hilarious.

more search results stats

So, further to last night's post....

Someone actually decided to do a search on "toronto grope" to see if it really works. Yup, it did, eh?

Someone's also found my page by googling "big big bolls"... my funny take on bollinger bands, which I think also included an AC/DC video. Funny.

The best is "is macusani yellowcake a good buy". Quickanswerno.

I find it especially frightening that people are coming to this stupid blog for investment advice and breaking news on e.g. Bear Creek or Aura. -shudder-

educational info

I should probably make a permanent post somehow (when I can figure it out and when I can be arsed) listing off a whole pile of educational info for learning about the nuts and bolts of junior mining. Both for me, and for anyone else who's come here knowing as little as I do.

In the meantime...

One thing I came across recently was a little PDF titled "The Valuation of Mining Companies". You can find it here. It's pretty good, it's more-or-less the same as what I got out of the talks at PDAC this past March.

Another fun read is the Hard Rock Miners' Handbook. Put out by McIntosh before they were bought out. Free to read. Goes into more detail than you need to know about the boots-on-the-ground business of mining.

A basic search resource is Google Scholar. If you want to read up on, say, VMS deposits, or the Hearne craton, or Economic Geology (that's what I really want to learn), or some such, you can just enter it into the search field like with normal Google and find a bunch of incomprehensible articles in geology speak to download as PDFs.

Google Scholar is most useful when you also have access to a University library account, because a lot of the articles that come up are only accessible with that journal's subscription. You could always sign up for an Intro Spanish and then use that $1000 tuition to pay for $50,000 worth of scholarly journal downloads. (My university never cancels internet access, so I'm still accessing journal articles all the time.) But thankfully, most people working in Geology don't seem to have anything to do with school, so the pdfs you'll find will also be in places like government (free) sites, exploreco (free) sites, and so on.

Natural Resources Canada has a nice huge site. You could poke around there for months and find all sorts of stuff. I'd assume that other countries with a mining industry have similar voluminous websites.

Any company's TR or PFS is a good read too - not just the ones you invest in, but all the other companies nearby that one's deposit.

And, of course, if you want to break the law, you could download a P2P program (I personally like microtorrent) and search Pirate Bay for geology texts and video series. But pirating data is bad and makes baby Jesus cry, so don't do that. Buy the stuff on Amazon instead.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Crazy, frickin' crazy, crazy leveraged ETF for you

ETF Lets Traders Short Stocks, Go Long on Gold

Since buying my Motorola Atrix, the most powerful smartphone in the world, that can blow your head clean off, I've added a load of news feeds and blogs to it so I can stay connected to bullshit and propaganda every minute of the day.

ETF Trends started out as a "well, why not?" addition to my RSS, but has since become one of my most interesting reads of the day. That's why it's #2 on my blogroll list, over there to the right.

The article linked above is an interesting little expose on FSG, an ETF that you might either call a freakin' widowmaker, or a way sexxay little piece of sin that you'd definitely want to keep from your wife. It's a double-long-gold-double-short-S&P ETF.

Let me let that sink in.


Now, if you've ever seen Gary Tanashian's big "Dow denominated in gold" chart, or are into his general Weltanschauung, I apologize for that big stain you just made in your pants.

Unfortunately it only trades $250K or so volume per day.

Here's the chart.

I'd be really really interested in who out there has the balls to ride this lightning. Or under what circumstance, if any, it could be a slam-dunk bet.

Maybe I'll forward this to GT....

Ritholtz articles

QOTW: Debt and Delusion....

Aww, here's the whole quote for you:

“Economists who adhere to rational-expectations models of the world will never admit it, but a lot of what happens in markets is driven by pure stupidity – or, rather, inattention, misinformation about fundamentals, and an exaggerated focus on currently circulating stories.” - Bob Shiller

I advise Shiller to dump the whole "economics" angle, since that pathetic childish dogmatic cryptofascist psuedoscience is a waste of time. Let's just rewrite his quote for him, shall we?

People who adhere to rational-expectations models of the world will never admit it, but a lot of what happens in the world is driven by pure stupidity – or, rather, inattention, misinformation about fundamentals, and an exaggerated focus on currently circulating stories.” - Bob Shiller if he quit wasting time

blog stats page


What's even funnier is, when you do search for "toronto grope" on Google, one of my blog entries is the first thing that comes up.

I guess nobody has called that paper "the Grope and Flail" since the opening of the internet to the drooling classes.

Friday videos part 2 - bobcat kittens

Here's some fun videos of baby bobcats being adopted and raised by a domestic cat, from

Friday videos - electro edition

Some electro for y'all.

Anthony Rother,

Miss Kittin,


The Normal,

and Ladytron.

Sulliden - update

Wow. This was a good prediction, eh? Sulliden's over $2. I said it looked nice at $1.79.

I guess the top of the channel is probably around $2.20 by now. It'll be interesting to see what happens then.

Sometimes even tech analysis makes you look smart. Only sometimes.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

"What if the CME hikes margins by another 100%?"

Someone (who reads this blog I think) sent me a message on Stockhouse asking me, "What if the CME hikes margins by another 100%?"

Too many people believe the crap foisted on them by pseudo-survivalist right-wing fascist fruitcakes on ZeroHedge and tfmetalsreport and the bulletin boards. There's not much I know about stock trading, but having read a nice short succinct 200-page book by Jim Rogers on commodity trading, this much I do know, which is still apparently more than 99% of the people who post on bulletin boards and conspiracy websites*:

The commodity exchanges hike margins in order to reduce the impact of price volatility on positions. Margin hikes make the commodity exchanges survivable.

Commodity exchanges are absolutely nothing like the typical retail dolt's experience of stock exchanges. Apparently, to trade a commodity contract, you might put up as low a figure as 5%. The margin price is actually set by the exchange, depending on the commodity and the contract size.

In the case of silver, if you only put up 5%, then when it has a 5% down day (or two days that add up to 5% down) you're wiped out. You get a phone call from someone at the bank the next day, and have to liquidate everything you have to pay them back for their 95% stake.

So higher margins actually create stability in the commodity markets.

I would assume that the CME actually has a formula where they determine an acceptable margin based on the volatility of the commodity. (I don't know if they use fat tails for the calculation - I'd assume they'd absolutely have to, but who knows?)

When silver was having it's monster run back in the spring, yes indeed the CME was hiking margins regularly! Because they had to! Because the advance in silver was outstripping its previous margin requirements!

ZeroHedge and Turd Ferguson like to spout off their nonsense that margin hiking is an evil plot to destroy the silver price. As if JP Morgan, the Lizard People and the Joos have some secret plot to screw you out of your cruddy silver rounds in preparation for the coming One World Government and coming of the Antichrist. There's really no such thing.**

Watch out who you listen to on the bulletin boards. These people don't have to pass an IQ test to trade stocks and post about it. Same about ZeroHedge. In fact, you get booted off of ZeroHedge for calling them on their fabulous bullshit. I know, because I was.

Groupthink is always dangerous.

* - feel free to correct anything I say here, if you actually know more about commodity trading than me. I am only a market newbie, and have never traded on a commod exchange, and unlike most retail pilgrims am always happy to be corrected by someone who truly knows more than me. I am simply assuming that nobody who actually knows more than me would ever read my blog.

** - funny enough, guess what unifies conspiracy theories about JP Morgan, The Lizard People, The Joos, The New World Order, and the coming of the Antichrist? All of these are right wing conspiracy theories, spouted off by American patriot neo-Nazi and fundamentalist types. Again, we can go back to the discussion about how dumbass traders with $20,000 in their IRA, who put it all into junior miners, suddenly decide they must toe a Tea Party Republican party line and spout off all sorts of other right wing bullshit to fit their supposed profile.

Like, blacks don't work and are poor (you really so sure that white trash don't outnumber them?), it's bad that Central Americans are swarming over the border (who's going to do all your farm labour? fat white folks?), taxing the rich is bad (who has more at stake in keeping the country running? poor folks or rich folks? ever read Marx?), Obama is a socialist (pft! he's pretty well disproved that by now, hasn't he?), Republicans aren't mentally retarded (ever watch Jon Stewart?), and so on.

I guess this is aided by the fact that most of the people who write about junior miners are fundamentalist Christians, racists, neo-Nazis, "paleo-conservatives", or at least far to the right of Strom Thurmond.***

The good things about these people are:
  1. their thought patterns are terribly predictable.
  2. because of (1), you can easily fleece them out of all their cash.
  3. they're stupid enough to keep coming back for more.

*** - which, I guess, makes for a very good reason to only stick to blogs written by commie socialist pinko Old Labour rogue Peruvian bloggers. At least you can be sure he'll always drive away the right-wing fascist groupthink. Like garlic for a vampire.

quick comment

$HUI looks pretty toppy. SLV's volume is moribund. All this while the Q and 500 are looking good. Are people just waiting for US and Europe debt news? Or will we have a slight (1-2 week) "consolidation" in our favourite markets now?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Quick update on $HUI

I'm very busy at work for the next week or two so don't expect a lot of posts.

Here's a quick update on $HUI. Basically, I agree with Gary Tanashian. :-)

Want more? I chart $HUI medium-term advances relative to the EMA(8), which seems to always act as support on the advance. Right now that's around 560. It could drop below that for a bit. Silver and gold have to figure out what's going on, and that requires the politicians figuring out what's going on.

This is all a temporary thing for a few days. I'm going to watch silver for hints. But $HUI's risk profile is great right now, as long as it doesn't lose the EMA(8) badly. What would make that happen, do you think? I have no clue.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Hi ho silver - shoot that nag in the head and move on

I was in a meeting and on the road for most of today. Then I got back to the office and chickened out on my HZU double long silver. Yes, in the afternoon.

On the good side, I'm still strongly up for the week, my other mining holdings (like especially BCM) look just grand, and at the end of the day I still managed to buy back a load of GOZ, USA and BTO for far less than I sold them. (I might buy more if we see another day of weakness in the miners - I still have some cash.) I also learned yet again never to go into an all-day meeting with a leveraged long position. And I learned yet again that I don't have the stomach or the wits for leveraged long positions.

And for you, dear readers, who gave me a whole load of pageviews despite me never having posted anything today, I've demonstrated to you, conclusively, that I'm the world's greatest contrary indicator.

Maybe now that I've shamed myself in front of my voluminous readership (four is an uncountable number in many cultures, after all) I might learn my frickin' lesson? Trading coaches like Brett Steenbarger (inactive now but still a great read) do say you have to shame yourself publicly with your losses if you want to move on and become profitable.

Anyway... the point of me getting into that silver double long position was that volume in SLV was increasing. Similar to how it did in April. That tempted me into thinking I'd see a quick burst upward again, like April. See? I think in analogies. Wednesday and Thursday were 56M and 58M days; Friday was light, but that's maybe to be expected, it proved nothing in itself. Monday was shaping up to be a decent volume day by my math; but then it ended up only 51M, and was sort of in a light trend down.

That should have told me something, that maybe I should have dumped my position at the close since the risk profile had increased. The volume should have been higher if we were going to see a bubble type move like April again. But it wasn't, the higher prices didn't lure anyone in. That should have rung the danger bell. It sorta did, but I disregarded it.

So today, volume in SLV was 57M - but the vast majority only came after the waterfall began at 1:30. That tells me that the volume only exists at around $38, not above $39. Of course, that the volume waded in on a $1 drop is a good sign; I doubt silver's going to collapse.

Would I put that position back in the near future? Of course - but only if I see the volume surging again. I think, with the bullshit parade happening in Europe Thursday, and the recent mumblings of some sort of imminent debt deal in the US, that no surge can happen this week.

Though I'm still of the opinion that Europe crashes in flames. So I'm sure I'll get my chance with silver again.

And at least I managed to sell 3 stocks Monday and buy them back cheaper today.

Monday, July 18, 2011

OMG I can't believe I'm linking to ZeroHedge posts

There may be one or two posters at ZeroHedge worth following, when doom actually is playing out. I don't trust ZeroHedge to tell me when doom cometh - they're a broken record. But my doom analysis is coming straight from Ritholtz's crew.

Anyway. These two posts include graphics from someone who's running a real terminal, so he's not an idiot like most at ZeroHedge.

Europe Imploding (Again): Greek Two-Year Note Yield Surges 213 Bps to Record 35.19%, More Italy Stock Suspensions

Sigma X Trading Suggests European Contagion May Be Shifting From Italy To The UK

Fortune favours the brave.

Hi-ho silver! Awayyy!!

OK, call me a dumass, but this is today's action.

8:00 - turn on the TV. See that silver's held the $40 that it hit last night in overnight trading.

9:30 dump BHV dump GOZ dump half my BTO dump 40% of my RIO dump half SWD dump 1/3 my BCM. Put all that money into HZU, the TSX double-long silver ETF.

Why? Because I don't see the reason that silver should stop at $40. And because if this is like a few months ago, it can hit $50 in a week. Which should mean about a 50% gain in HZU.

COT for PMs is still poor, right?

I'll be very happy to buy back all the above stocks for 10%-20% more next week, if I've made a 50% return in the meantime.

But I am also concerned that the Euro Doom thing is going to freak out the markets. And we may meet our doom this year. Silver today seems to be maintaining its strength despite the broader markets being down 1.5%. All in all, I don't see why not.

So I'm swinging for the fences here, and I invite all of you to watch me either hit it out of the park or whiff it like a dolt and wash myself out big-time. I am Pat Tabler, it's bottom of the 9th with 2 out, man on first, and for some weird reason despite my bunting skills and .500 lifetime pinch-hit average I'm swinging for a home run.

May Satan guide me and bestow me wealth.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Here's the post that will alienate mostly everyone

To what extent do people actually comprehend the bullshit that comes out of their own mouths?

People are still primates. It's normal human behaviour for people to wear certain clothes to identify themselves as members of a certain social group; likewise, people "wear" certain kinds of music to identify themselves as members of a certain social group. Not all people - just the ones who are the most like unthinking herd animals.

Maybe, then, herd people also take on certain ideas to "fit in" with their idea of their social group? Does that explain why so many people on ZeroHedge and the stock boards like to spout off completely inane right wing racist dogmatic bullshit? They figure "ooh, I've invested $20,000 in the stock market. That must mean I should hate the environment, hate taxes, hate poor people, and thus support the Tea Party."

That's really gotta be it.

I mean, how does someone hate the environment if, say, they have kids, or even just a history of cancer in the family? How do you hate taxes when you're (supposedly) in favour of a balanced budget? And what's all this about hating "illegal immigrants"? Do you want to pick all the tobacco and pluck all the chickens yourself, fat whitey?

By the way... I'm not a "socialist". To the extent I have any redistributive and egalitarian impulses, it's because I'm a pragmatic anarchist. I feel if "the State" is going to be legitimate at all, its function must be entirely and only to serve the needs of the people; and since poorer people need more help than richer people, that's where the most help should be targeted.

Besides: if the State doesn't do anything for the poor, then what duty do they owe the State? Be careful how you answer: that seems to have been the thinking behind previous revolutions. Y'know - scary communist ones.

Oh yeah - and I hate rich bastards raping and plundering my country and others for their own fucking benefit. Not because I'm a socialist - just because I hate self-righteous criminals who feel they have a birthright to steal everything for themselves. Exactly in the same way that I hate crackheads who break into houses to steal shit to fence for their next dose.

Anyway... more on this topic over the coming months.

Again, Korelin this weekend

Wow... again, I'll give you a second chance to go listen to Peter Grandich on Korelin Economics Report.

He actually sounds like he's in favour of eliminating the Bush tax cuts and eliminating tax loopholes for multinational corporations. And ending the foreign wars.

Wow. Who'da thunkit. He's some sort of socialist now. I wonder when he began hating America? Doesn't he know the Tea Party disagrees with him on all 3 topics? Even weirder, doesn't he remember how much he hates the Arab race? How he wants an apocalyptic race-war between Muslims and Christians? I mean... he posts about it all the time on his blog!

Korelin, btw, seems like a very reasonable and nice fellow. Same can not be said for those of his listeners who post on the blog: they mostly seem to be harcore racists, "patriots", Tea Party fascists and other assorted styles of right-wing loons. Basically unthinking, unquestioning, entirely enslaved by their own politico/religious dogma. Subhumans. The fetid masses.

Unsurprising, as they're American junior mining fans. The kind of idiotic scum that buy the Pinksheets. And buy silver rounds by mail-order at a 20% premium. And post on ZeroHedge.

No wonder the robots are going to exterminate us.

God... nothing depresses me more than reading the opinions of people on the internet.


Oh, and again, on segment 6, Brent Cook appears and talks about the Prospect Generator model. Again. I wish he'd find another topic to talk about for a while. He knows a lot about economic geology - why can't he talk more about that? Or the structure and genesis of VMS deposits. Wouldn't that be a fun thing to hear Brent talk about?

Euro doom posts on Ritholtz

There's a reason I have Ritholtz at the top of my blogroll over at the right. He and his blogmates are geniuses. You read them to get the macro picture, and you don't read the Goldman Sachs agents provocatuers at ZeroHedge.

So, for example, you absolutely must read this article that came up on the Ritholtz RSS this weekend:

The Euro and You

As I said, the ECB is running around trying to put out fires. Deine Euro banking system ist kaput! Die bondholdern sind kaput! Deine debt ist kaput! Deine CDSes sind kaput!

My thinking (for what it's worth, and remember basically I'm a noob who's essentially reading Tarot cards here) is that this is one of those slow-motion plane-crashes that will take over a year to play out - like the 2007-8 US banking crash.

And I'm happy, because if I manage to get the read just right, I can make a 5x-10x profit on a triple-short ETF (TZA?) in a few months, and then retire. I don't care if it's a dangerous challenge....

Anyway, here's a link to the article again, because you might just end up a loser if you don't know this ahead of time.

The Euro and You

Now, here's a question... given that, at a bare minimum, the ultra-rich in the Euro periphery are taking their money out of the markets (remember my Europe charts?), where is it going? As GT found out from his wisest of readers this weekend, it's been going heavily into the Franc. Well, the Franc is too small to mop up all that liquidity... gold, anyone? After all, this is a fat tail, a "really really bad outcome" as Bernanke calls it.

Hm.... silver's approaching $40 tonight in China....

Also, from the Glob and Mail: Greece

Drachma no panacea for broke and broken Greece


Yup, Greece is boned. Europe, therefore, is also boned.

This weekend's Glob and Mail: rare earths?

Picked up the Glob and Mail this weekend, for an hour or so of reading. Not really necessary anymore, as I have a superphone with feeds from all sorts of business news sources. Even still.

Here's an article from the paper on Rare Earths for you:

For rare earths, an abundance of interest

Here's an interesting sentence from the article:

The global rare-earth industry is worth only $1.5-billion, yet the industries relying on it are worth an estimated $4.8-trillion.

$1.5B? You want to invest in that? That's likely smaller than the total value of the Latin American pastry industry. And I think LatAm will see a lot of growth in cake-eating as its economy blossoms. Tell ya what... let's ask Otto to find us some nice LatAm pastry companies to invest in, instead of trolling about the various internet analysts looking for rare earth plays. Okay?

The second half is also revealing: it says that rare earths are actually a very minor cost driver of their industries. So again, prices can go up from here.

But they won't, because the US government is getting involved:

Several members of Congress from both parties are planning bills to build stockpiles of the minerals and to provide support for a domestic rare-earth industry. One bill, recently approved, authorizes the U.S. Energy Department to make loan guarantees to support rare-earth exploration and development in the United States, with the aim of creating a complete supply chain and production capability within the next five years.

Government subsidy, you say? Depressed prices in the future, I say.

more - Europe doom?

By the way....

In case my thesis of Euro Doom 2012 is worth looking into, maybe the best way to track it is to keep an eye on the Germany:US bond spreads?

I mean, if the bond vigilantes are going to cave in Europe, then the ultimate endstate would be a collapse of all debt - not just periphery debt.

Anyone know where I can find Germany:US spreads charted on the net?

Swiss Franc? Debt? My opinions on GT's newsletter this week.

Am reading GT's newsletter this morning, and he's pointed out this week (in his charts of gold versus currencies) that gold looks terrible versus the Swiss Franc, and he was wondering what's the deal there.

I had read that the EURCHF pair has gone crazy the past few weeks as fear of Euro collapse spreads. The Franc is a port of safety in Europe. And since the EUR is so huge and CHF relatively tiny, any small supply-demand change shoots the Franc up.

I'd think there's not nearly enough Francs out there to mop up all the fear. Dunno in what direction I can take that last opinion, but it's there anyway. I wonder if the ultra-rich in the peripheral Euro countries are putting a lot of their money into gold? You think? They certainly haven't been putting their money into stocks - as we've seen from my Euro stock ETF collapse charts. Not even into the German and French markets. And if they're scared of holding Euros, do you think they'd really want to put their money into dollars?

Now, as for the S&P 500 and the broad US markets...

Who says that if the picture looks good for PM miners, that it also has to look good for the S&P? Seriously, who says? Yes, miners can take a dump when there's a liquidity/lack of greed problem. But silver seems to be saying greed's okay, JNK agrees, $VIX agrees. That doesn't mean, though, that the $SPX should do as well. Maybe we only see an $SPX grind moving forward?

I'm not a market apocalyptist, I'm more of a Ritholtz when it comes to the S&P... but I don't see why, in today's situation, in the present cycle as it sits right now, $SPX would print a new long-term high to beat 2006-2007.

As far as GT's opinion about the $CPCE... yeah, I agree. My opinion on this is little more than an amateurish tarot card reading by a market newbie, but I'd be not at all surprised to see a market top and subsequent collapse in 2012, to give some poetic justice to the right-wing Armageddon fanatics. I think the bond raids on Euro debt are suggesting that we gots a big clusterfuck over there in Europe that can only ever be papered over until it finally crumbles. All they can do is manage and mitigate right now.


I also find great solace in his GSR chart. The moves of the past 2 weeks are way sexxay. Um... does anyone want to jettison all their stocks, buy HZU, and go double-long hi-ho silver?

Overall I liked this week's NFTRH. Lots of data I hadn't been watching, but also lots of inferences whose chain of logic can be questioned - which is the true value of a letter like this. Ultimately my goal is to outperform GT (and Otto, and anyone else I subscribe to)... but that means putting my money where my mouth is, and sometimes disagreeing.

In this case I'm not pro-$SPX at all. And I'm actually starting to wonder if maybe gold & silver are really rising on a safety trade right now.

The latter is Sprott & GATA's wet dream, you know. Never mind they got the particulars of the narrative wrong and it really has nothing to do with the USA. But if we see Sprott & GATA's wet dream... well, go look them up on ZeroHedge and see what they foresee.