RMB May Month-in-Review: Rare Earth Market Averages Down 15.45%, Buying Opportunities Abound

I just finished the Vancouver Cambridge House Show and I have to say – I loved it. Many were complaining of ‘dismal’ attendance from the retail audience, but here’s what I found — opportunity plus numerous exceptionally high net worth investors (aka “vultures”) seeking deals…some people were complaining and using terms like ‘hunkering down’, but those that bury themselves in the sand, will not be seen…

Many of us saw our portfolio values dwindle, so I thought I would compare share prices from start of month to end (May 1, 2012 with share prices on May 31, 2012) and quantify the damages. We got a downward average of 15.45% for RareMetalBlog sponsors. Molycorp declined 29.96% from USD$28.10 at month open and closed at USD$19.68 versus LYNAS whose decline was only 5% — from AUD$1.10, closing at $1.045…clearly shareholders anticipate the Malaysian processing facility will open soon?

En route to Vegas for another rare earth investment conference in an hour, I will let you know what the consensus is. So here’s my highlights for May, with the last Annual General Meeting (AGM) of Neo Material Technologies Inc. (TSX: NEM) standing out as one of the most memorable events of the month. Held in Toronto on May 30, 2012, it was really a walk down memory lane for the rare earth industry. On the same day we posted a piece called, “The Best Rare Earth Company in the World” — it gives a summary of the AGM and an overview of the evolution of Neo Material Technologies.

News about Lynas Corporation Ltd. (ASX: LYC) also continued to permeate the headlines in May. All three of the public hearings held by Malaysia’s Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) took place in May and now rare earth industry followers are looking ahead to mid-June for the PSC’s report to be tabled and debated in the Malaysian Parliament. We published a timeline of events to keep readers updated on the latest developments in Lynas’ Advanced Materials Processing (LAMP) facility in a piece called, Lynas Shares Move Upward Gaining 17.88%.

On May, 30, 2012, Hastings Rare Metals Ltd. (ASX: HAS) announced the appointment of Alastair Metcalf as their new Chief Executive Officer. Alastair has over 25 years of experience in the resources sector, mergers and acquisitions, business development and financing. On May 14, 2012, Ucore Rare Metals Inc. (TSXV: UCU) announced the appointment of Patrick Ryan to its Board of Directors. Patrick has a broad range of experience and corporate leadership in industrial operations management, large scale manufacturing, and the supply side of the international automotive industry.

Here’s a review of share prices for the month of May:

Though rare metal stocks are down an average of 15.45%, we also wrote a piece about how the world’s richest woman, Gina Rinehart, amassed her wealth through investments in the resource sector. Commerce Resources Corp. (TSXV: CCE) also released robust results of their NI43-101 compliant Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) for their Ashram rare earth element project in Quebec. Peak Resources Limited (ASX: PEK) announced on May 28, 2012, that drilling had commenced at its 100% owned Ngualla rare earth project in Southern Tanzania with plans to complete an estimated 30,000 meter drilling program in 2012.

June seems to be shaping up to be an exciting month for the rare earth industry with Great Western Minerals Group Ltd. (TSXV: GWG) announcing the filing of their NI 43-101 resource estimate and technical report for the Steenkampskraal rare earth property in South Africa. Yesterday, Texas Rare Earth Resources Corp. (OTCQX: TRER) also announced that their PEA is expected to be released later this month. Despite the current market prices, these stories are clear signs that the rare earth industry is progressing ahead.

*Prices from Tantalus Rare Earths’ website for May 2, & May 31, 2012.
**Prices taken from Google Finance on 2012-06-05 from historical price charts.
***Prices taken from Yahoo Finance on 2012-05-31 at 5pm EST.