Thursday, September 26, 2013

Commentary on Yesterday's Vancouver Junior Mining Seminar

The seminar had the title:
Calm After the Storm—A Return to Normality in the Mining Sector

Yesterday I went to listen to the insights implied in the title.

This was perhaps the strangest seminar I have ever been to.

The room was full of people including many who've seen at least three cycles (excepting the unusual number of TSX people including at least one "Compliance Officer...I wonder what they were there for?).  The stage contained people for whom this is the first cycle they've ever seen (not been through as this one is not over).

So the stage held a bunch of juniors—just kids new, really—to the industry sitting in front of senior investors and brokers and others who work directly for the industry as well as bunch of shills for the regulators.

It was embarrassing to have thought that they would offer any insight or ideas (other than how to save $50 bucks here and there and, of course, the warning-speak from the two regulators on the stage) about the condition, cause or way forward in this market.

The title and the lack of information implied in the title says it all.  They are clueless—and we wasted our time.  If this represents in any way the leadership for the future of the junior mining sector we are all in huge trouble.

Six 'guys' the venue set-up guy, the auditor guy, the TSX Venture guy, the Lawyer guy, the BCSC guy, the Investment Advisor guy and the Executive search guy.   Hmmmm. 
The Cambridge guy grew up in the sector and had a picture of the two BreX bad guys in his house with text underneath saying "Lest we forget".

The Auditor guy announced he'd just ditched his Blackberry for the latest iPhone and preceeded to offer minor savings on audit fees if you bought a $230 CICA book.

The TSX Venture guy had the worst graphics—illegible with lots of missing data—recited listings and fund raising statistics, and the usual stuff that pretty much everyone in the room already knew years ago.

The Lawyer guy talked about Director's liability insurance (in other words it's going to get worse so cover your a**?).

The BCSC guy offered alitany of various threats and which ones were worse that others after which he said he was going to offer some positive stuf—he said how there were going to reduce the number of filings to twice a year but that they weren't going to.  What???

The Investment Advisor guy was going to tell us hao we got here and proceeded only speak about the sector only saying that the American downturn didn't help and that share roll-backs were probably a good idea.

The mining sector Executive Search guy did a stand up comic routine with his facts and figures saying you couldn't really trust them saying it was like George Costanza (Seinfeld) picking up women by doing the exact opposite of what he would normally do.

Calm After The Storm eh?  Isn't the phrase Calm Before the Storm?

What can I say. 

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