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The Enduring Relevance of Mises’s and Hayek’s Critique of Socialism

(Don Boudreaux) TweetIn my latest column for AIER I do my best to explain that the argument leveled against socialism by Ludwig von Mises and F.A. Hayek…

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This article was originally published by Cafe Hayek

(Don Boudreaux)

In my latest column for AIER I do my best to explain that the argument leveled against socialism by Ludwig von Mises and F.A. Hayek remains relevant even when the government’s goal is not full-on (‘classic’) socialism of the sort that was advocated in the first half of the 20th century. A slice:

Prices arise whenever prospective buyers offer to purchase inputs (including labor services) from owners who have the right to accept or reject these offers. The resulting pattern of prices reveals the prevailing, relative scarcities of different inputs. If the amount of steel necessary to build 10,000 lawn-mower blades is priced at less than is the amount of aluminum necessary to build 10,000 blades of the same quality, the blade manufacturer is not only informed by prices that steel is in more abundant supply for his purposes, the lower price of steel incents him to act on this information. He uses steel rather than aluminum. As my colleagues Tyler Cowen and Alex Tabarrok succinctly note in their textbook, Modern Principles of Economics, “A price is a signal wrapped up in an incentive.”

Importantly, applicability of the Mises-Hayek argument does not kick in only when the economy becomes fully socialized. While it’s true that the greater the extent of intervention the worse will be the resulting economic damage, the Mises-Hayek argument is the general one that all market prices are rich with information – information that is inaccessible without markets – and that whenever government acts to distort or hide this information the economy suffers.

Consider a government that intervenes only by imposing a protective tariff on steel. The resulting higher price of steel tells a lie to market participants; it tells them that steel is less abundant than it really is. If the tariff pushes the price of steel above that of aluminum, the blade manufacturer will produce the 10,000 blades using scarcer aluminum rather than more-abundant steel. Lawn-mower blades are thus produced using an input – aluminum – that ‘should’ be reserved to produce other outputs. These other outputs will either go unproduced or be produced in lower quality.

Yet in an economy as large as that of today’s global market, this lone inefficient use of resources will obviously not quake society’s foundations. Its impact won’t register on even the most sensitive economic Richter scale. Given the size and dynamism of the modern economy, detecting – not to mention measuring – the negative impact of this tariff on overall economic performance would be practically impossible.

While this lone intervention will not, unlike full-on socialism, cause economic collapse, its negative impact nevertheless is real. If the government adds to this protective tariff on steel a subsidy to aircraft manufacturers, the pattern of market prices is further distorted. More resources are used wastefully. More consumer goods and services that would have been produced go unproduced.





Author: Don Boudreaux

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Energy & Critical Metals

Critical Resources nabs Mavis Lake project and foothold in established Canadian lithium province

Special Report: Critical minerals explorer Critical Resources has notched another arrow to its bow, signing a binding terms sheet with … Read More
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Critical minerals explorer Critical Resources has notched another arrow to its bow, signing a binding terms sheet with Essential Metals (ASX:ESS) and International Lithium Corporation (TSVX:ILC) for a 100% interest in the Mavis Lake lithium project in Canada.

The proposed acquisition is a big opportunity for Critical Resources (ASX:CRR) to add a high-quality critical minerals project with excellent further exploration potential to its portfolio.

Especially considering the strong outlook for the lithium market.

The price for lithium carbonate, 99.5% Li2CO3 min, battery grade, spot price CIF China, Japan, and Korea is sitting around US$26/kg.

Not to mention, Canada is a first-class low-risk mining jurisdiction which is strategically located for lithium offtake into the North American manufacturing markets – with the project close to the Trans-Canada highway and railway arteries.

Pic: Location of the Mavis Lake lithium project.

Excellent opportunity to enter the lithium market

Previous drill programs in 2018 returned high-grade lithium oxide intercepts including 55.25m at 1.04% from 82.75m, and 26.30m at 1.70% from 111.9m including 7.70m at 2.97% from 130.5m – which the company says presents significant exploration potential.

“The Mavis Lake terms sheet presents an excellent opportunity for the company to add a high-quality project to our portfolio that further increases our exposure to critical minerals,” Critical Resources (ASX:CRR) CEO Alex Biggs said.

“The company is on a trajectory to become a high growth business focused on building a project pipeline based on asset quality and exposure to in-demand minerals.

“Our focus for this year remains on the upcoming exploration of our Halls Peak base metals asset in New South Wales, Australia which we are very excited about.

“The Mavis Lake project fits all these requirements and provides an excellent entry to the lithium market with an asset that offers excellent prospectivity in a tier 1 jurisdiction.

“Due diligence is ongoing, and we will update the market in due course.”

Exclusivity fee allows due diligence 

As part of the terms of the agreement, the company will pay a total non-refundable exclusivity fee of $200,000, which provides exclusivity until 4 January 2022 – during which Critical Resources will undertake due diligence on the project.

Subject to the satisfaction of the conditions precedent, at completion the company will be required to:

  • Pay $1.5 million cash payment to the sellers;
  • Issue 68,000,000 shares in Critical Resources to the sellers (or their nominees) at an issue price of $0.022 per share (a deemed value of $1.496 million); and
  • Issue 8,000,000 fully paid ordinary shares to the deal facilitator who is a non-related party.

Milestone 1 payment and deferred consideration includes:

  • Payment of $1.50 million cash to the sellers; and
  • $100,000 of fully paid ordinary shares in Critical Resources (up to a maximum of 4,000,000 shares) to the facilitator upon definition of JORC compliant resource of not less than 5.00 million tonnes containing not less than 50,000t of Li2

Milestone 2 payment and deferred consideration includes:

  • Payment of $1.50 million cash to the sellers; and
  • $100,000 of fully paid ordinary shares (up to a maximum of 4,000,000 shares) in Critical Resources to the facilitator upon definition of JORC compliant resource of not less than 10.0 million tonnes containing not less than 100,000t of Li2

$4 million placement planned

As a condition to completion of the acquisition, Critical Resources will conduct a capital raising via a placement to professional and sophisticated investors at $0.029 per share to raise around $4 million. The company confirmed all directors will be participating in the raise.

Participants will receive one free attaching option for every three shares with an exercise price of $0.04 and expiring 3 December 2024.

The proceeds will fund

  • Halls Peak drilling: $1.5 million;
  • Mavis Lake Lithium acquisition, preliminary drilling, and associated costs: $2.15 million; and
  • Corporate and working capital: $0.350 million.

Sixty Two Capital Pty Ltd is the lead manager and on completion will be entitled to a capital raising fee of 6% of the total amount – and subject to shareholder approval, will be entitled to be granted 15,000,000 unlisted lead manager options with an exercise price of $0.04 and expiring 3 December 2024.

 


 

 

This article was developed in collaboration with Critical Resources Limited, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

 

This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.

The post Critical Resources nabs Mavis Lake project and foothold in established Canadian lithium province appeared first on Stockhead.



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Pegasus Resources Expands Its Uranium Assets In Saskatchewan

Pegasus Resources Inc. (TSXV:PEGA) continues to make its presence in the prolific Athabasca Basin uranium camp with the recently announced
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Pegasus Resources Inc. (TSXV:PEGA) continues to make its presence in the prolific Athabasca Basin uranium camp with the recently announced acquisition of three uranium properties at the northwest edge of the Basin. The 54,026 hectare properties comprising 13 mineral claims contain a cumulative total of 535,718 lbs of uranium, and significantly, includes a historic resource estimate of 202,200 tons at 0.119% U308 at an average width of 4.8 metres.

These new properties add to the previously announced Pine Channel uranium property which consists of six mineral claims covering 6,028 hectares and is located at the northern edge of the Athabasca basin, roughly 40 km west of the town of Stony Rapids. The Athabasca Basin in Northern Saskatchewan is host to several of the world’s largest and highest-grade uranium mines, including Cameco’s (TSX: CCO) McArthur River Mine and Cigar Lake Mine.

The Wollaston Northeast property is located in the 20A zone within the prolific Wollaston Domain, 45 kilometres northeast of the Eagle Point Uranium Mine. The property has at least eight known base metals showings and five previously documented uranium occurrences, and is considered highly prospective for basement hosted uranium mineralization.

Much of the recent renewed interest in uranium in the region is due to recent discoveries within the Wollaston Domain where the Eagle Point deposits are hosted within its basement rocks. In addition to the Eagle Point Mine, the area also hosts the historic Rabbit Lake Mine and Cameco/Orano Key Lake Mine, the world’s largest high-grade uranium mine.

The 12,397 hectare Bentley Lake Uranium Property consisting of three mineral claims, and is located 35 kilometres northeast of the edge of the Athabasca Basin, within a transition zone between the Wollaston and Mudjatic Domains. This trend is host to several major uranium deposits, including Cigar Lake, Roughrider, McArthur River and Midwest. It is located at the transition zone between the Wollaston and Mudjatik geological domains.

The third property is located approximately 40 kilometres northeast of the edge of the Athabasca Basin and within the Charlebois-Higginson Lake Uranium District. The 6,908 hectare Mozzie Lake Uranium Property consists of three mineral claims and has a historical resource estimate of 204,200 tons at 0.119% U308, with an average width of 4.8 metres, and containing 535,718 lbs of uranium. What makes the Mozzie Lake Property particularly compelling, aside from the historical resource estimate that Pegasus’s exploration efforts may be able to increase significantly, are the pegmatite deposits of the Charlebois-Higginson Lake Uranium District.

Since being initially explored from the 1940’s through to the 1960’s, there has been virtually no exploration on the property. Previous work in the region, as well as on the Pinkham Lake property at Mozzie Lake, indicated that the pegmatite deposits may also host mineralization which contains rare-earth-element bearing minerals. Rare earth minerals are in high demand today due to the needs of the various technology, consumer electronics, and electric vehicle manufacturing industries. PEGA plans to examine the property’s rare earth potential as part of its uranium exploration program at Mozzie Lake.

Pegasus will next review the historical data on the properties to determine an exploration strategy and work programs, and will provide shareholders with updates in the near future. The company’s recent announcements of the uranium assets have certainly rekindled interest in PEGA shares, and its market capitalization has increased by almost 50% to $7.98 million in recent weeks, signifying that investors are enthused about the direction management has taken.

PEGA last traded at $0.095 on the TSX Venture exchange.


FULL DISCLOSURE: Pegasus Resources is a client of Canacom Group, the parent company of The Deep Dive. The author has been compensated to cover Pegasus Resources on The Deep Dive, with The Deep Dive having full editorial control. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security.

The post Pegasus Resources Expands Its Uranium Assets In Saskatchewan appeared first on the deep dive.

Author: Phil Gracin

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The Ethical Investor: ESG moves, lessons from the energy crisis and JP Equities’ stock tips

The Ethical Investor is Stockhead’s weekly look at ESG moves on the ASX. This week’s special guest is JP Equity … Read More
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The Ethical Investor is Stockhead’s weekly look at ESG moves on the ASX. This week’s special guest is JP Equity Partners’ director and partner, Nic Brownbill.

The world is in the grip of an ongoing global power crisis that has seen energy prices soaring by thousands of percentage points.

From China to Europe and now India, the cost of energy is surging drastically. The price of natural gas has even quadrupled in some parts of the world.

 

Source: IEA via Reuters

 

But economists are now warning this might be just the first of many power crunches the world will see as we transition into the new economy.

According to a research paper by CommBank’s analyst Vivek Dhar, there are two main root causes that led to the crisis — a strong demand recovery from the pandemic, and an acute shortage of two key power-producing fuels – natural gas and thermal coal.

As economies reopen, there is a sudden pent up demand from consumers which meant that factories were forced to switch on their production capacity at short notice. This was exacerbated by a colder than usual European autumn, as the continent potentially faces a more-freezing-than-usual winter season.

In China, the crisis mainly stemmed from an undersupply in local production of coals, according to Dhar, adding that coal supply has been hampered in China because of the government’s own environmental protection regulations.

So what can we learn from all this?

Dhar reckons that we are transitioning into the new economy too fast, too soon.

“What the recent energy crisis has shown is that the energy transition needs to be planned carefully,” Dhar wrote.

“This will mean significant investment in renewable generation, batteries, electricity grids and hydrogen.”

But he thinks the roll-out of a decarbonised grid and role of gas need to be clearly defined too.

“Under-investing in gas infrastructure relative to its role in coming years will only serve to make Europe’s energy market more vulnerable to prolonged gas shortages, and increase dependence on Russia.”

Like Europe, China’s decarbonisation ambition will need to be planned as well, Dhar said.

“If coal mines and coal power plants are closed before a renewable replacement is in place, power shortages in China could be an ongoing concern.”
 

What’s happening in Australia

Australians have chosen climate change as the top ESG priority, according to the latest survey conducted by global ESG consultant, SEC Newgate.

And more than half of the 1,000 Aussies surveyed said they were happy with the direction the government is taking on the environment.

ESG Rio
Source: Survey by SEC Newgate

 

Aussie respondents also nominated retailers Coles Group (ASX:COL) and Woolworths (ASX:WOW) as the top local companies when it came to doing well on ESG metrics.

These results should provide food for thought for PM Scott Morrison, who’s currently caught in a political wrangle with the Nationals in setting our 2050 climate goals.

The PM has told Liberal colleagues that he wants to bring a binding 2050 net zero commitment to the COP26 Summit in Glasgow next month, without having to upgrade Australia’s 2030 commitments.

Nationals Leader and also Deputy PM, Barnaby Joyce, said however that he was willing to back the 2050 targets only if funding for regional producers and farmers were made as part of the deal.
 

Special guest JP Equities’ Nic Brownbill shares his views and ESG stocks

Nic Brownbill, a partner at JP Equity, told Stockhead that decarbonisation is a mega global investment opportunity, one that JP Equity wants to be all in on.

How big is the potential for ESG investing?

“We see the whole decarbonisation theme as the next mega global investment opportunity. An estimated $41 trillion is required to decarbonise the planet. It’s going to be a bigger opportunity than the crypto market, because unlike cryptos, the carbon market is going to be mandated by governments, major asset managers and pension funds.”

Which segment of the ESG market do you see outperforming?

“Some companies will fall short in trying to make their carbon targets, so the balance will need to be met with carbon credits. I think carbon emissions will eventually be metricated, and the carbon offset market is going to be a way for major companies to offset their emissions.”

Would that investment opportunity catch on in Australia?

“I believe the Australian market hasn’t really caught on to the opportunity of this yet. But I think something will really start to emerge from the COP26 conference in November, where you’ll see a sustained mega theme starting to unfold in this country.

“I think we will start to see a complete emergence of Australian companies in the carbon space over the next few months and beyond.”

What are the ASX stocks that JP Equity likes in the carbon credit space?

One ASX stock that we’ve been watching very closely is  Fertoz (ASX:FTZ). They’re a leading North American fertiliser manufacturer that produces a unique low-emission rock phosphate product that increases crop yield by 15%.

“Importantly, it can generate significantly lower CO2 emissions in manufacturing compared with other commercial fertilisers.

“This presents a really significant opportunity because agriculture as a sector accounts for 24% of all human generated greenhouse emissions. Fertoz is one of the first movers in the carbon credit market, and since May this year has been issuing carbon offset credit certificates.

“It’s not a matter of if, but when disclosure of carbon emissions will become metricated. And as a result, Fertoz is getting some strong enquiries from other companies looking to offset their footprints by buying carbon credits.”

Any other ASX stocks you like in the ESG space?

“We’re also bullish on Mpower (ASX:MPR). The company is Australia’s leading specialist in renewable energy, battery storage and micro-grid business. It has a focus on five megawatt solar farms, and is in the process of creating an initial portfolio of 20 sites across Australia in the coming years.

“That gives them an aggregate capacity of around 100 megawatts, and an estimated value of more than $150 million. It’s now down to what the team can deliver in some of those projects to build up the portfolio.”

 

Notable ASX ESG-related news during the week

Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO)

The energy giant announced that it was targeting a 50% reduction in Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2030, and a 15% reduction by 2025 from a 2018 baseline of 32.6Mt.

Around $7.5 billion in direct capital expenditure will be spent on decarbonising Rio Tinto’s assets from 2022 to 2030, including $0.5 billion per year from 2022 to 2024.

Strandline Resources (ASX:STA)

The company released its Sustainability Report for 2021, outlining its commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs).

STA said it’s focused on managing development risks at its Coburn project in WA to safeguard workers and ensure environmental compliance.

Lithium Power (ASX:LPI)

The company has appointed global consulting firm Deloitte to ensure a robust ESG program at its Maricunga project in Chile.

Deloitte has been tasked to imbed sustainable protocols in LPI’s lithium extraction operations, and to establish ambitious standards for LPI to become a carbon neutral producer, while keeping high standards on the social aspects.

Jadar Resources (ASX:JDR)

The company also said it has completed its maiden Sustainability Plan, with strategies aligned to the UNSDGs.

 

The views, information, or opinions expressed in the interview in this article are solely those of the interviewee and do not represent the views of Stockhead.

Stockhead has not provided, endorsed or otherwise assumed responsibility for any financial product advice contained in this article.

The post The Ethical Investor: ESG moves, lessons from the energy crisis and JP Equities’ stock tips appeared first on Stockhead.




Author: Eddy Sunarto

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