Its shoes-off, shorts on and shirts-open weather around this particular wing of the reportage behemoth that is the Stockhead newsroom… and what better way to celebrate some warm, sunny weather than by taking a rocket-ride around the flotsam and jetsam that washed up on the shores of Headline Bay today.

Time to blow up the air mattress, grab a tinnie from the chilly bin and relax while I try my best to turn a day’s worth of noise into a digestible pellet of nourishment for your brain.



Landing in the inbox this morning was a wonderful presser about electric shark deterrents, which might just be this year’s must-have Christmas stocking filler for dads around the country.

The boffins at Flinders University (they do fine work… brilliant stuff) have been looking into whether a long-range device to keep Great White sharks away is more effective than smaller, personal devices designed to do the same.

Essentially, it’s the difference between putting huge signs up underwater that say “Don’t Eat People!”, and carrying your own personal sign that says the same thing, but which you can also hit sharks with if you want to.

Turns out, it’s the little personal ones that do better – but even then, we’re talking about a scenario where the Toothy Angry Swimming Death Machines are still highly likely to get within 2-3 wetsuit-soiling metres of their potential meal before deciding not to get all om-nom-nom about stuff.



In the Middle East, Qatar appears to have taken the plunge and gone full North Korea in response to growing media coverage of the nation on the eve of the FIFA World Cup.

In the face of mounting criticism from basically everywhere else, Qatar is frantically pushing the Principal Skinner Principle, which states: “No… it is the children who are wrong”.

The mountain of uncertainty about Qatar’s host city credentials keeps growing and growing, which has baffled and enraged Qatari authorities, who are now claiming that it’s because *checks notes* the whole of Europe is racist.

Now, while that might be extremely true in a broad sense, it’s a long bow to draw for the host nation when it’s putting its country, its laws, its traditions and abundant disregard for even the most basic of human rights in the spotlight and being mad when most of the rest of the world says “Not cool, my guy… not cool at all”.

In Business News, Target (the American one, not the Australian one) shed about 13% of its value overnight, off the back of a brutal quarterly report. Not super-exciting – that sort of thing happens all the time.

The most interesting thing from the report is that the fall is at least partially because the retail giant has had to wipe US$400 million – nearly $600 million of our Fair Dinkum Dollary-Doos – due to “shrinkage”.

Shrinkage is the industry euphemism for “people keep stealing and we can’t seem to stop them” – and more than half a billion dollars worth is an eye-wateringly massive amount of merch that has gone wandering out the door, stuffed under someone’s shirt.

And, a last little nugget: Former Tesla Australia boss Kurt Schlosser has pleaded guilty to insider trading, after buying up a chunk of Piedmont shares 12 days before it was revealed that Tesla and Piedmont had signed a binding sales agreement for supply of quite a bit of spodumene concentrate.

Schlosser reportedly sold the Piedmont shares shortly after the price leapt on news of the agreement, and made about $30,000 on the deal… about $2,000 for every year in prison he’s facing for that breathtaking lapse in judgment, and for telling a mate about it as well.

He’s due back in court in early December to learn his fate – but it’s hard not to wonder if he’d just been better off stuffing things under his shirt at Target if he needed some extra scratch.



A couple of quickies coz I’ve just noticed the time… BBX Minerals (ASX:BBX) has announced that the drilling program at its Ema Project in Brazil has gone not very well at all, with assays conducted for gold, platinum, palladium, iridium, and rhodium returning a zero.

BBX says it wasn’t really expecting anything from those holes anyway, so whatevs – or words to that effect.

Meanwhile, Neometals (ASX:NMT) is feeling a lot more positive, reporting that its Class 4 pre-feasibility study for production of titanium and iron-vanadium concentrate at Barrambie is complete, and the company reckons it’s a go-er.

The PFS says that NMT has a “Probable Ore Reserve of 44.5Mt at 18.7% TiO2, 44.1 % Fe2O3  and 0.61% V2O5”, and – assuming a simple mine, crush, mill and beneficiate operation to produce mixed gravity concentrate onsite, there’s more than $130m per annum lurking beneath the soil.

It’s obviously early days, and there’s more work to be done to firm up the resource, but Neometals seems pretty happy about it all so far, which is lovely for them. It really is.



Desert Metals (ASX:DM1) – Capital Raise.

Synergia Energy (ASX:SYN) – Synergia’s called time on its stay on the ASX, with an application to be removed from the official list.

Kin Mining (ASX:KIN) – In more upbeat news, Kin’s got an exploration announcement in the wings. Huzzah!