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by Will Purcell
The diamond and specialty minerals stocks box score for Thursday was a weak 73-100-105. The TSX Venture Exchange fell 21 points to 889 while polished diamond prices inched upward. Eric Friedland and Tom Peregoodoff's Peregrine Diamonds Ltd. (PGD) gained one-half cent to 12 cents on 713,000 shares. The company has been quiet since late November, when it released microdiamond counts from drilling at CH-6, a key kimberlite at its Chidliak diamond project on Baffin Island. A new resource estimate is expected in about a month.
Bruce Counts's Lithoquest Diamonds Ltd. (LDI), down one-half cent to 38 cents on 11,000 shares, has wrapped up its 2017 exploration program at the North Kimberley diamond project near the northern coast of Western Australia. Mr. Counts, president and chief executive officer, says that Lithoquest completed the work, its first field program on the big project, "on time and under budget." He says that the results will help define this year's field program, which is expected to start in the second quarter, once the rainy season ends. Lithoquest's program focused on four priority targets where composite rock samples collected in April had produced kimberlite indicator minerals with chemistry deemed favourable for diamonds. Mr. Counts says that the company also completed about 60 line-kilometres of ground magnetic surveys and 20 line-kilometres of ground gravity surveys.
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