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by Will Purcell
The diamond and specialty minerals stocks box score on Thursday was a weak 65-90-146 as the TSX Venture Exchange fell fractionally to 621. Rough diamond prices were weaker this week, dipping 0.2 per cent. Most companies have been insisting for more than a decade that rough prices will relentlessly outstrip inflation by about 2 per cent annually, but prices are now down nearly 7 per cent over the past five years. Little wonder that Canada's largest diamond companies are hovering near long-term lows. Mountain Province Diamonds Inc. (MPVD), $7.18 in 2016, gained one cent to $1.37 on 115,000 shares, while Stornoway Diamond Corp. (SWY), $1.34 in 2016, closed unchanged at 20 cents on 218,000 shares.
Frank Basa's Canada Cobalt Works Inc. (CCW), down 6.5 cents to 47.5 cents on 908,000 shares, has received high-grade cobalt and silver assays from its Castle project, near Kirkland Lake in Ontario. The assays, from 47 shallow holes drilled late last year, returned high-grade cobalt in about a dozen of them, with grades between 1.05 per cent to 3.77 per cent cobalt over an average thickness of 1.77 metres. The best of the hits occurred within a 0.5-metre interval that also averaged 13,208 grams of silver per tonne. That hit occurred within a broader, 5.51-metre zone that averaged 2,260 grams of silver per tonne, plus 1.87 per cent cobalt across 2.54 metres.
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