Barry FitzGerald: Throw another four stock tips on the barbie, last year’s are cooked
Garimpeiro had a sense something was up on his recent annual fishing trip to country Victoria.
Relegated to the back seat of the car for the first time in 25 years, Garimpeiro was not asked once for a 2024 stock tip in the junior space during the three-hour journey.
Finally, he decided to broach the subject – why no questions on stock tips?
“What, stock tips on how to lose money ya wanker?’’ was the response from the driver.
Garimpeiro was deflated but was big enough to acknowledge that his last effort in the 2023 BBQ Stoppers list which he shared on the last fishing tour was in fact a guide to value destruction.
The BBQ Stoppers is a list of commodity agnostic juniors that Garimpeiro sticks in his pocket before he heads off to festive season BBQs where he inevitably gets asked what could excite in the year ahead.
They are not recommendations, just stocks with modest market caps that have clear leverage to game-changing exploration upside. There were five stocks on the 2023 list – Bellavista (ASX:BVR), Devex (ASX:DEV), Magmatic (ASX:MAG), QMines (ASX:QML) and Stellar (ASX:SRZ).
They lost between 14% (Devex) and 58% (Bellavista) of their value during the year, with most of the losses towards the more painful end of that scale.
It was a tough year for the junior space, with speculative investment dollars drying up in response to concerns the world was heading into recession because of horror interest rate rises, among other things.
Still, that’s no excuse. There were plenty of junior stocks that took off during the year in response to exciting exploration results. It’s just that they were not on the 2023 BBQ Stoppers list.
The good news for Garimpeiro is that despite the miserable 2023 performance, he is still cracking it for festive season BBQ invites. So he has compiled the 2024 BBQ Stoppers in the vain hope that the crowd are not as harsh as his fishing mates.
There are four of them this time around, ranked alphabetically: Three are lithium stocks which goes to the amazing valuation creation we’ve seen in recent times in the lithium hunt (think Azure and Wildcat), and there’s one gold stock.
BULLETIN RESOURCES (ASX:BNR): Garimpeiro mentioned this one on September 23 when it was an 8.2c stock. It subsequently took off to 20c when the reason for the interest came to pass, namely clearance from the EPA for a drilling program at its Ravensthorpe lithium project.
The Mines Department has asked for more information which the company has provided, so the hope is that drilling will get underway before long. The delay has seen the stock drift down to 13c for a market cap of $38m (undiluted).
The drilling will be keenly watched as the project sits all of 12km southwest and along strike from Allkem’s (becoming Arcadium Lithium after its $9.2 billion merger with Livent) ageing Mt Cattlin mine.
Preliminary surface and remote sensing work by Bulletin has confirmed the presence of high-grade spodumene and lepidolite bearing pegmatites on two main trends. Now for the drilling.
Mt Cattlin is running short of resources for the long run, making anything Bulletin comes up with of strategic interest.
INDUSTRIAL MINERALS (ASX:IND): Trading at 73c for a market cap of $50m. Recently traded as high as $1.33 on initial enthusiasm for its pick-up of the Pippingarra Quarry project near Port Hedland in the Pilbara.
It is on a mining lease which is a big tick, with IND’s interest being the previously overlooked lithium potential. While overlooked, there was a 6m intersection grading 3.73% lithium from historical drilling along strike from the existing quarry.
IND is swinging the bat on this one right now, with first results possible late December/early January. The company has long had a high purity quartz agenda in the Pilbara.
ORA GOLD (ASX:OAU): This gold stock was mentioned a week ago on the basis that both Garimpeiro and the smarties at Argonaut had it pencilled in as one to watch.
It was trading at 0.6c at the time and still is for a market cap of $34 million. Watch out for a flow of results from exploration at its high-grade Crown Prince project, 15km northwest of Meekatharra.
A maiden resource estimate for the SEB lode where drill results have been impressing is in the works, with Argonaut tipping 125,000-145,000oz grading 6-7g/t. That alone would make it a strategic resource in a region with plenty of hungry treatment plants owned by others looking for a sweet ore source. Also lots of exploration upside.
RAIDEN RESOURCES (ASX:RDN): Another one looking to swing the bat on lithium exploration in a big way at its Andover South project in the Pilbara. As the name suggests, the project is immediately south of the Andover lithium (and nickel) discovery of Azure and Mark Creasy, a 60:40 joint venture.
Gina Rinehart and Chile’s SQM have recently teamed up to launch a $1.7 billion takeover offer for Azure, valuing 100% of the Andover discovery at $2.8 billion even though there is no formal resource estimate just yet.
Raiden has mapped outcropping pegmatites on its own ground and sampling of rock chips has returned high grade lithium values. It is crying out to be drilled but first consents and approvals have to be secured.
It will be one to watch in 2024. Having said that, Raiden is more than Andover South. It has extensive ground positions prospective for lithium elsewhere in the Pilbara, as well as the Mt Sholl nickel-copper-PGE project which has attracted the attention of the heavyweight miner First Quantum for a potential farm-in deal.
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