On the day when a 90 year old UK woman took the plunge in terms of a Coronavirus vaccine that cures nearly as many people as survive the disease, it was impressive that virus tester Novacyte (NYCT) climbed another 11% to 891p. Fans of the stock were venting constant hope of fresh orders to the tune of an alleged pot of up to £22bn – although one suspects most will go to friends and family of key Government personnel. Arguably, the more serious driver was the CEO of Roche suggesting that demand for COVID-19 tests is set to outstrip supply “for months.”
Having been described to start the week as a potential “100 bagger”, it was perhaps not surprising Wishbone Gold (WSBN) managed to climb another 8%. This came after an interview with Chairman Richard Poulden, in the wake of Wishbone’s recent new Australian metals exploration campaign and new tenement application in Queensland.
Mining companies remain on the front foot, with mining investor Gunsynd (GUN) continuing its in recent TR1 heaven, with serial stock market entrepreneur Chris Akers declaring he is now over 4% on the shareholder register. The shares have been trading higher from 1p to around 2p since the start of December, in the run up to the Rincon IPO in Australia at the end of this week, in which Gunsynd is a significant investor.
Sticking with the mining area, and after quite a lengthy run up, it was finally the turn of ECR Minerals (ECR), the gold exploration and development company focused on Australia to push to fresh multi year highs above 3p. This was something of a delayed reaction to last month’s Victoria Goldfields operational update in which the company said that with its drill rig in Victoria it was in a position to accelerate its exploration work and drill key targets.
Continuing the recent buoyant trade in the wake of its reverse takeover of Two Shields on December 1, cybersecurity firm Brandshield Systems (BRSD) saw its shares rise again from the opening 19p baseline at 19p. Investors chased the stock up to 26.5p via a 12% rise. Brandshield’s edge of AI and big data to identify threats may be what has already made it a relative outperformer as compared to its standard online threat counterparts.
Another market newcomer very much on the front foot was Helium One (HE1) where it has been apparent from the get go that this is a company attracting professional investors, as much as the usually fast money £500 punters. Here the story was the way that the stock of the Helium play managed to get gushing coverage in The Mail regarding the company’s Rukwa project which covers 3,590 square kilometres in south western Tanzania, and consequently is the largest known primary helium resource in the world. Perhaps more to the point in terms of the share price, £6m was raised in an oversubscribed placing at 2.85p and the stock has surged from this zone. It closed up 51% at 7p, with the suggestion being that those who missed out on the oversubscribed placing last month were scrambling to join the Helium One “bubble” for fear of missing out. One trader reported that some in the market were targeting a near term share price of “30p – 50p” – although the timeframe was not made clear.
The start of the week witnessed rumours of a distressed short in Zoetic (ZOE) shares, and the further 8% rally in the stock to a closing high of 74p versus an intraday high of 82p, suggested that there was a still the odd bear in distress. In the case of CBD specialist Zoetic, last month’s “landmark” distribution deal in the US continues to be the driver for the longs, and the re-rate continues despite siren voices suggesting that this could be ended by a cash call.
Bezant Resources (BZT) finally crossed the recent 0.3p resistance zone, with a 16% gain. The implication of the break higher for the stock, was that investors were finally waking up to the merits of the Mankayan Copper Gold deal, one in which Bezant is due to retain 20% and be paid $10m in shares. Given that Bezant also has interests in Zambia and Namibia, it would appear that there is a lot going on within the modest £10m market cap.
Xtract Resources (XTR) understandably built on its recent share price recovery with a 19% gain in the wake of its Manica Alluvial Gold and corporate update. The combination of total alluvial gold production of 24kg over the quarter, as well as revenue of just over $250,000 cheers traders. A heads up regarding production for the Fair Bride project in the latter part of H1 2021 also underpinned investor sentiment.
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