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ECR Minerals (ECR), the exploration and development company focused on gold in Australia, announce the latest results for additional testing for the critical mineral Antimony (Sb) from diamond core previously drilled at Bailieston, Central Victoria, Australia. ECR said the discovery of 32% Antimony over an intersection of 0.3m, coupled with multiple other highly anomalous results, marks a significant breakthrough and validates our decision to re- submit these samples for further analysis. The finding is truly remarkable, especially considering the current surge of interest and demand for the critical mineral. In the near term, its primary focus will be on identifying a suitable strategic partner to collaborate with and fund further exploration to maximise what has the potential to become an exciting multi-commodity asset at Bailieston.

Comment: Those who bought at the low end of the range off the back of yesterday’s tax loss initiative, have been well rewarded with today’s positive Antimony news as an additional bonus. The shares have already blasted through the 0.38p target suggested yesterday. Ideally, above this they can progress to last summer’s 0.5p plus peaks in coming weeks, provided the stock can settle in the upper 30’s.

Sovereign Metals (SVML) announced that Rio Tinto has notified the Company that it has exercised all its share options to increase its shareholding in Sovereign to 19.76%. SVML said Rio Tinto’s further investment in Sovereign reaffirms Kasiya’s position as one of the most significant critical minerals projects globally. With Rio Tinto’s wealth of experience as one of the world’s largest and most accomplished global mining companies, Kasiya is well-positioned to potentially become a market leader in low-CO2-footprint natural rutile and graphite.

Comment: Lightning has struck twice as far as SVML shares are concerned, which is just as well as the shares should have been massively re-rated in the wake of the initial Rio stake. Hopefully now the market will realise how serious Rio is and how significant Kasiya is. 2021’s peak through 50p can be regarded as the target for the shares by the end of next month, or preferably sooner.

Contango (CGO), a company focused on the development of the +2 billion tonne Muchesu coal project in Zimbabwe owned by its 74.75% subsidiary, Monaf Investments (Private) Limited confirmed it has now entered into binding transaction agreements with Huo Investments (Pvt) Limited, the investment vehicle of Mr Wencai Huo, a Zimbabwe-based Chinese national with extensive mining and business investments in Zimbabwe and Southern Africa. CGO said it was delighted to confirm the signing of the Definitive Agreements, which it believes will materially transform the Company for the better. It has secured a supportive and strategic shareholder in the plc and also attracted material investment into the Project. This significant investment in infrastructure, mining and processing capacity is expected to unlock the potential of the world class Muchesu Project.

Comment: Although the shares are well up from where they were last week, perhaps through the intervention of psychic traders buying the stock, today’s news should set the seal on a decent re-rate for the shares. The technical target is 2.6p initially.

Shield Therapeutics (STX), a commercial stage pharmaceutical company, announced it has entered into a $5.7 million monetization agreement with AOP Health International Management AG, the largest shareholder in the Company. STX said this agreement, following its recently announced Sallyport deal, provides it with additional operational and financial flexibility. The $5.7 million, along with approximately $8 million cash on hand at the end of May 2024 allows it to further fortify its balance sheet and expand our working capital. A return to post March resistance towards 2.5p seems fair short term.

Comment: After a painful period since the autumn, STX delivers the RNS which should deliver a decent turnaround for the share price, as befits news that effectively de-risks the company. May’s highs near 2.5p should be the minimum on the upside after today’s news.

Equals Group (EQLS), the fintech payments group, provided a trading update for the six months ended 30 June 2024. The Group is pleased to announce a strong period of trading in H1-2024 with revenues up £14.9 million compared with the same period last year to £60.0 million, an increase of 33% year-on-year (H1-2023: £45.0 million). As at 30 June 2024, the Group had no debt and had cash at bank of £20.5 million.

Comment: A picture perfect update from EQLS, one that reminds us how well challenger payments groups are doing, and perhaps also how much traditional banks rip off SME’s. The main resistance of recent months at 130p seems a reasonable target in coming weeks.

First Class Metals (FCM), the UK listed metals exploration company, announced significant advancements in field activities and supporting technical developments. FCM said the review of the historic drill core from the Sunbeam Property was its initial focus this year after EGS ‘found’ the TerraX core. The significance of the review is the revelation that from the stripping at Roy and Pettigrew the host porphyry was proved to be auriferous: successful resampling here could revolutionise the property’s potential. Despite Dead Otter’s assays being the highest recorded from the North Limb of Hemlo, it suspects coarse gold might be skewing fire assay results, possibly misrepresenting the samples. Adopting Photon Assaying, a relatively new method, may resolve this issue.

Comment: What feels like frenetic activity continues at FCM. The key now is that some of the benefits of this work starts to filter into the share price, which to date has continued an extended, and perhaps rather unfair bear run. The initial task is breaking back above 3p.

Fulcrum Metals (FMET), a company focused on mineral exploration and development in Canada, announced that it has on 2 July 2024 entered into a definitive option agreement with Terra Balcanica Resources Corp. (CNSX: TERA) for the sale of its uranium projects located in Saskatchewan, Canada. FMET said This strategic move not only provides it with the capital to advance its innovative and environmentally friendly tailings processing assets, Teck-Hughes and Sylvanite, and focus on its gold exploration projects but also validates its business model of identifying low entry-level assets and crystallizing value for its shareholders. This milestone is a testament to its commitment to both shareholder value and sustainable development.

Comment: This option agreement should be just what the doctor ordered for FMET shareholders, although the company will have to step up a gear in terms of spreading the good news, as so far it has been left under the radar as compared to other more noisy small cap explorers.

Technology Minerals (TM1), the first listed UK company focused on creating a sustainable circular economy for battery metals, announce that its 48.35% owned subsidiary Recyclus Group Ltd has signed a black mass offtake agreement with LOHUM Cleantech, India’s leading producer of sustainable energy transition materials. TM1 said it was a strong endorsement for its battery recycling process and demonstrates the demand for black mass, which contains minerals crucial for the battery manufacturing sector and green transition. It was seeing increased commercial traction for its recycling solutions, and this deal further underscores its potential to build international trading partners as the world shifts to electrification.

Comment: TM1 has historically struggled to deliver newsflow to move the fundamental dial, and the share price. Today’s news though, may be enough to all the deep bear run to relent for a while at least.

Coinsilium Group (AQUIS: COIN), the Web3 investor, advisor, and venture builder, announced that it has entered into a Simple Agreement for Future Tokens with the Otomato Web3 Automation Protocol. COIN said there are numerous examples of highly successful web-based automation platforms including Zapier ($5bn valuation) and IFTTT (valuation estimated between $100m and $500m) in Web2. It therefore sees a huge opportunity for a similar model adapted for the fast-growing Web3 space. This investment in the future tokens of the Otomato Web3 Automation Protocol presents a great opportunity to join a highly promising venture with substantial growth potential at a very early stage.

Comment: Another day, another RNS from COIN, which underlines the new push the company is making in Web3, something which the market is still not giving it credit for, especially in terms of the share price.