Stocks to Watch: November

NOVEMBER is set to be a busy month for miners with AGM season in full swing and M&A back on the agenda. MiningNewsPremium checks out what to look out for this month.
Stocks to Watch: November Stocks to Watch: November Stocks to Watch: November Stocks to Watch: November Stocks to Watch: November


Kristie Batten

While trading might be quiet tomorrow due to the “race that stops a nation”, the Reserve Bank of Australia board will still meet to decide on interest rates.

According to Bloomberg data, economists unanimously believe the RBA will leave rates on hold once again.

November is set to be a busy month for BHP Billiton and its investors.

The company will hold its Australian annual general meeting in Adelaide on November 20 where, like last year, climate change is set to be a key topic, as well as shareholder returns and the proposed demerger.

BHP will then hold its Australian investor day in Sydney on November 24, focusing on copper and coal after last week’s London event focused on iron ore, potash and petroleum.

CEO Andrew Mackenzie has also promised to announce further details of the demerger plan, although a BHP spokeswoman confirmed that any news would be separate to the AGM and investor day.

Other companies holding AGMs this month include iron ore miners Fortescue Metals Group, BC Iron and Mount Gibson Iron, copper producer Sandfire Resources, nickel players Western Areas and Sirius Resources, uranium miner Paladin Energy and gold companies Northern Star Resources, St Barbara and Evolution Mining.

Merger and acquisitions are back on the agenda, particularly in the gold space, with Burkina Faso-focused Orbis Gold attracting interest.

The company has cancelled a proposed $US20 million placement to UK private equity fund Greenstone Resources in favour of a $A20 million entitlement offer, but has rejected a 65c per share takeover offer from Canada’s SEMAFO.

Orbis and its advisors remain in “active discussions” with third parties regarding “value-enhancing” alternatives.

Doray Minerals and Mutiny Gold announced a merger last week to potentially create a 150,000 ounce per annum Western Australian gold producer.

Morgans analyst James Wilson believes Gold Road Resources is the next potential takeover candidate.

“The large 5 million ounce resource base will no doubt be the focus of M&A and should be attractive to mid-tier gold producers, particularly after the recent wave of takeovers such as Papillon [Resources], Orbis and the most recent Mutiny/Doray merger which has depleted the market of credible acquisitions,” he said.

“Gold Road has a significant pipeline of advanced exploration prospects which could add to the existing 5Moz global resource and the next 12 months could see this figure boosted significantly if similar success to Gruyere is unearthed.”

Outside the gold sector, Iluka Resources remains in talks to acquire Dublin-based Kenmare Resources, while Dart Mining received a draft takeover proposal in early October.

On the exploration front, Magnis Resources, the recently renamed Uranex, is set to release a maiden resource for its Nachu graphite project in Tanzania.

While the nickel price drop has dented Cassini Resources’ share price, its ongoing drilling program at the remote Nebo-Babel project in Western Australia has still excited the market.

Shares jumped 17% last Wednesday on the latest batch of high-grade nickel-copper results and the company has flagged more results, as well as the first assays from the Babel deposit, are on their way this month.

Long-time Silver Lake Resources boss Les Davis will step down on November 19 with operations director and former Mount Gibson CEO Luke Tonkin to take over.

And, on November 25, South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill will formerly re-open Valence Industries’ Uley graphite mine and facilities.

The deposit was discovered in the early 1900s and was worked intermittently until it was placed on care and maintenance in 1993.