Master Investor’s annual exhibition at Islington was a huge success. I was billed under the title Panama Papers since – natch – I was wearing what purported to be a panama.
I got lucky in that I opined a sharp fall in the market and, lo and behold, the following (i.e. last) Monday just that transpired. Ditto a rise in the gold price. I wish it was always this easy.
A couple of days ago the chairman got me to sell AUD/USD at 0.7708. The dividend is slightly delayed since the price, as I type, is 0.7713. But it will happen.
A contact, William Butler, had warned me to be careful about shorting Fevertree (LON:FEVR) since he reckons that there can be a takeover or a decision by the management to develop a product line which might achieve exactly the same rating. He is at the other end of equities assessment to mine and I let it go. But, staggeringly, Charles Rolls, now no longer a director, announces this morning that he has placed 3 million shares at £27.50 with institutions. These people live in another world. He has still got circa 10 million shares to go and is sworn not to sell any more for three months.
First Quantum Minerals (LON:FQM) has had an amazing putative tax demand for c. $8 billion slapped on it by the Zambian government. This is surely the same move as that carried out by the Tanzanian government on Acacia. The idea is to bore everybody to death and destroy the venture on the ground thus giving the opportunity to pick up the residue on the cheap.
In August 1969 I was pottering along in my banger about ten miles from Lusaka when a swarm of police outriders forced me off the road. They were “guarding” President Kaunda who was on his way in a copper-coloured Roller to Mulungushi, a central location in independence politics, to announce that the mines were immediately nationalised. It was a golden buying moment since Kaunda knew that he would have to retain European staff to make the mines work. I think the same opportunity arises. But not just yet.