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Diamond & Specialty Minerals Summary for July 18, 2022

2022-07-18 20:43 ET - Market Summary

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by Will Purcell

The diamond and specialty minerals stocks box score for Monday was a hopeful 104-71-135 as the TSX Venture Exchange rose 12 points to 597. Ewan Mason and Ken MacNeill's Star Diamond Corp. (DIAM) nevertheless lost another cent, closing at 13.5 cents on 611,000 shares. Investors have found a new trading range for Star's stock, but they remain baffled about what changed in the past seven months to prompt Rio Tinto Exploration Canada Inc. (RTEC), Star's co-venturer at the FalCon project in Saskatchewan, to consider quitting the project. RTEC was enthused to be getting back to work late last year; now it has forced the project into mothballs while pondering its future.

With its Argyle mine closed and Diavik slated to follow in a few years, speculation has Rio Tinto ready to abandon diamonds. Even so, mining majors rarely abandon huge and potentially profitable projects without good reason. Therefore, while RTEC told Star it "remains pleased with the results" of its comprehensive studies and bulk sampling of FalCon, it is not sufficiently pleased to sustain its former gung-ho attitude. Why, you ask? Well, that is akin to a state secret, and nobody is talking. Nevertheless, a deep dive into the current data and old records provides a plausible explanation.

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