Most metals ended higher in October on the back of trade war resolution hopes (that hoary chestnut) and social unrest across Chile, a globally significant copper and lithium producer.

And the two that fell marginally – iron ore and nickel – are still up about 60 per cent since the start of the year.

 >>Scroll to the end for October’s Top 50 small caps

Until it stumbled in early November, gold was continuing its leisurely stroll toward $US2000/oz ($2900); up about 3 per cent for the month and 18 per cent year to date.

Benchmark’s lithium price index fell another 1.8 per cent but these price reductions are slowing down, with “tightening margins suggesting the market could be bottoming out”. It’s about time.

‘Dr Copper’ crawled off the mat, recording a much needed 3.5 per cent boost to $US5795/t for the month.

Despite copper having a mostly forgettable year – down marginally since January 1 – punters can’t get enough of the red metal. Probably because analysts keep talking about that emerging supply gap.

Check this out:

The percentage of copper-focused plays in our top 50 has increased from 13.5 per cent in August, to 19.7 per cent in September, to 22.7 per cent in October.

Gold retained dominant market share, while rare earths explorers moved strongly into the rankings.

 

TOP STOCKS: OCTOBER HIGHLIGHTS

Magmatic Resources (ASX:MAG) +194%

Market Cap: ~$20m

In early September, ~$5m market cap Magmatic was finalising a WA gold project acquisition and, simultaneously, the demerger of its East Lachlan copper-gold assets in NSW.

Evidently Magmatic wasn’t too fond of this initial plan because when NSW neighbour Alkane Resources (ASX:ALK) hit the big one at Boda it performed a hasty U-turn.

We mean ‘neighbour’ quite literally:

Now — following a $2.2m cap raise and the appointment of experienced mining exec David Flanaghan to the board — Magmatic has dumped the WA acquisition and officially refocused on copper-gold in the East Lachlan. Game on.

 

Northern Cobalt (ASX:N27) +94%

Market Cap: ~$5m

Northern Cobalt is no longer a cobalt explorer. In October, the micro-cap signed a binding agreement to acquire up to 80 per cent of an Alaskan gold project called Goodpaster.

Goodpaster surrounds Northern Star Resources’ (ASX:NST) high-grade Pogo mine, which has produced 4 million ounces of gold over the past 13 years.

We see a name change on the horizon — something like Northern Gold, or Northern Gold Star.

 

Krakatoa (ASX:KTA) +72%

Market Cap: $7m

Another Alkane nearology play. In late September Krakatoa — which had recently acquired a rare earths project but was for all intents and purposes a shell company — announced the acquisition of the Belgravia project.

Belgravia is nestled between Newcrest Mining’s (ASX:NCM) Cadia Valley mine and Alkane Resources in the Lachlan Fold Belt.

It’s a trendy neighbourhood.

 

Tietto Minerals (ASX:TIE) +64%

Market Cap: ~$100m

Calling a stock which is up 420 per cent over the past year ‘a sleeper’ is probably absurd, but that’s the feeling you get from Tietto. Like it’s just waking up.

These guys love to drill, which means strong news flow for investors.

In February, Tietto told Stockhead it was aiming to double the 700,000oz Abujar project resource in Cote D’Ivoire, West Africa, in an April resource update.

It exceeded that goal, significantly. Abujar is currently 1.7 million ounces and growing fast.

Since then, over 20,000m of additional diamond drilling has been completed using the company’s three, wholly owned rigs.

This drilling blitz will feed into an updated mineral resource estimate for the AG deposit, due this quarter. And yeah — a fresh 50km diamond drilling campaign also kicked off earlier in October.

 

Stavely Minerals (ASX:SVY) +55%

Market Cap: ~$285m

A current market darling. It was our #1 mover in September after making a huge copper discovery at its namesake Victorian project.

The market’s verdict? $40m market cap Stavely leapt ~330 per cent to $1 per share in September.

The investor love continued to flow in October — despite some insisting the stock was due a correction — and Stavely currently has a market cap of about $285m.

 

FYI Resources (ASX:FYI) +54%

Market Cap: ~$15m

Roly was, believe it or not, changing a car tyre at 5pm during this interview.

READ: FYI’s Roly Hill on HPA demand, disruption, and an industry leading project

How’s that for dedication.

In October, this WA-based high purity alumina front runner took its pilot processing plant (a smaller version of the real thing) for a week-long test drive.

It was successful, marking the next crucial step in the development of the Cadoux HPA project.

 

Here’s the top 50 mining small caps for the month of October>>>

Scroll or swipe to reveal table. Click headings to sort. Best viewed on a laptop

CODE NAME % RETURN PRICE 1 OCT PRICE 31 OCT MARKET CAP
MAG MAGMATIC RESOURCES 194 0.051 0.150 20.41M
AEV AVENIRA 133 0.006 0.014 6.17M
VIC VICTORY MINES 100 0.001 0.002 4.14M
MRD MOUNT RIDLEY 100 0.001 0.002 5.37M
ACS ACCENT RESOURCES 100 0.003 0.006 1.09M
N27 NORTHERN COBALT 94 0.033 0.064 4.86M
KTA KRAKATOA RESOURCES 72 0.025 0.043 7.10M
OVL ORO VERDE 67 0.006 0.010 20.03M
TIE TIETTO MINERALS 64 0.220 0.360 98.11M
AQC AUSTRALIAN PACIFIC COAL 59 0.110 0.175 8.83M
SVY STAVELY MINERALS 55 0.860 1.330 284.35M
FYI FYI RESOURCES 54 0.046 0.071 15.11M
NES NELSON RESOURCES 50 0.060 0.090 4.10M
NCZ NEW CENTURY RESOURCES 50 0.250 0.375 238.98M
CML CHASE MINING 50 0.020 0.030 6.21M
AVW AVIRA RESOURCES 50 0.002 0.003 3.00M
ARO ASTRO RESOURCES 50 0.002 0.003 3.82M
GSN GREAT SOUTHERN MINING 48 0.050 0.074 24.55M
HOR HORSESHOES METALS 45 0.011 0.016 3.11M
NME NEX METALS 45 0.011 0.016 3.08M
FMS FLINDERS MINES 42 0.053 0.075 261.39M
PGI PANTERRA GOLD 38 0.026 0.036 7.59M
EHX EHR RESOURCES 38 0.026 0.036 4.56M
NML NAVARRE MINERALS 36 0.088 0.120 57.39M
OKJ OAKAJEE 36 0.042 0.057 5.21M
JRL JINDALEE RESOURCES 34 0.220 0.295 11.36M
COY COPPERMOLY 33 0.006 0.008 17.02M
GBE GLOBE METALS AND MINING 31 0.016 0.021 9.78M
KGD KULA GOLD 30 0.020 0.026 1.53M
BLK BLACKHAM RESOURCES 30 0.010 0.013 61.31M
GBR GREAT BOULDER RESOURCES 30 0.050 0.065 8.67M
ENR ENCOUNTER RESOURES 30 0.135 0.175 49.14M
TKM TREK METALS 29 0.024 0.031 1.70M
RDS REDSTONE RESOURCES 29 0.007 0.009 4.27M
INR IONEER 27 0.200 0.255 376.76M
OKU OKLO RESOURCES 27 0.110 0.140 57.79M
LCD LATITUDE CONSOLIDATED 27 0.015 0.019 5.23M
GMN GOLD MOUNTAIN 24 0.058 0.072 43.91M
PLL PIEDMONT LITHIUM 22 0.094 0.115 93.77M
VML VITAL METALS 22 0.009 0.011 23.57M
BRB BREAKER RESOURCES 22 0.275 0.335 69.77M
TLG TALGA RESOURCES 21 0.425 0.515 114.41M
RWD REWARD MINERALS 20 0.083 0.100 16.26M
AZI ALTA ZINC 20 0.005 0.006 10.98M
RIE RIEDEL RESOURCES 20 0.010 0.012 5.02M
PWN PARKWAY MINERALS 20 0.005 0.006 7.32M
MRZ MONT ROYAL RESOURCES 19 0.215 0.255 9.61M
MRC MINERAL COMMODITIES 18 0.190 0.225 94.77M
NXM NEXUS MINERALS 18 0.044 0.052 6.15M
AZM AZUMAH RESOURCES 18 0.028 0.033 32.29M