Russian Diamond Giant ALROSA Plans to Develop New Diamond Deposits in Yakutia Containing Over 40 M Carats

Russia’s ALROSA plans to develop diamond deposits that it won at an auction by Russia’s State regulator for the usage of natural resources.

The deposits, located in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), Russia, are alluvial deposits at “Ruchey Gusiny”, “Ebelyakh” and diamond pipe “Dalnyaya”.

The total reserves of the diamond deposits are said to be 42 million carats, the average price per carat of which tops $70.

Trez Capital Mortgage Investment Reports Loss in Q2 Results

Trez Capital Mortgage Investment Corporation (TZZ) posted EPS loss of $0.10 in second quarter due to lower commitment fees, interest revenue resulting from a reduction in the average size of the mortgage portfolio and an increase in expenses primarily related to the orderly wind up plan. The loss from operations summed up $3.8 million, compared to income from operations of $3 million in same quarter previous year. In last quarter of 2015, TZZ reported EPS of $0.14, slightly below consensus estimate of $0.15 and marginally above compared to last year of $0.13 in fourth quarter.

In Q2, 72% of the portfolio was invested in first mortgages, while weighted average loan-to-value of the mortgage portfolio remained 75%.  Geographically diversified portfolio across Canada was Ontario (45%), Alberta (27%), New Brunswick (14%), Nova Scotia (12%) and Saskatchewan (2%). Weighted average interest rate and term to maturity on mortgage investments remained 7.3% and 20.5 months, respectively.

Strategic review continues still results remains uncertain. Earlier this year, the Special Committee had committed to a monetization transaction but it remains uncertain whether an attractive bid will materialize. Over next 90 days, speculation getting about $7.6 million in refinancing of existing mortgages by private funds. As shareholders agreed wind-up plan, TZZ has got repayment of about $10.2 million principal amount of mortgages.

Street maintains “Sector Perform” rating with target price lowered to $8.60 per share.

Amazon (AMZN) Plans To Open Grocery Stores

Seattle based Amazon.com Inc. is aiming to open line of small grocery stores. These “Project Como” brick-and-mortar stores will sell perishable items like produce, milk, and meats that customers can take home.  Initially only Amazon Fresh subscribers will be able to shop at them.  Analysts believe that opening grocery sales would be crucial to the company’s growth.

Amazon is also setting up to open drive-in locations, where customers can pick up groceries that they ordered online. The company is developing license-plate reading technology to speed wait times. Recently Amazon dropped its $299 annual price for Fresh and instituted a $15 monthly fee, available to members of its $99-a-year Prime delivery service. These new stores are made to capture the large share of people who wish to pick out their produce or bring home their groceries on the way from work.

Amazon will have to compete with Wal-Mart, which plans to bring the service to nearly a quarter of its roughly 4,600 U.S. stores by the end of next year. Walmart has begun testing grocery pickup, along with other retailers like Kroger and Giant. Doug McMillon, Walmart’s chief executive says “We see a huge opportunity through pickup, particularly in grocery. The combination of digital relationship and stores is a winner.”

Asian Stocks Fall After Disappointing China Data

USA stocks slumped after the open on Wednesday, with the Dow headed for a more than 150-point drop, as investors found little to cheer in the Federal Reserve’s latest thoughts or in fresh Chinese economic reports.

Robertson added that the exploding battery issue “can only be a long-term threat if the company doesn’t take the correct steps to restore its brand”.

“Sluggish external demand will continue to weigh on China’s trade outlook, given downside risks stemming from the USA election to the UK’s execution of the Brexit process”.

In US dollar terms, exports crashed 10 per cent against a consensus forecast of a 3 per cent decline, while imports shrank 1.9 per cent when they had been expected to rise.

Bangkok was down 0.8 percent in the morning, extending a sharp sell-off this week on worries about the gravely ill King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who is considered a stabilising influence on the troubled nation. “Clearly Unilever won’t be the only company wanting to pass on a 10 per cent or similar price increase due to the fall in the pound”, Rabobank’s Foley added.

Bank shares in Europe also declined, with the broader Euro Stoxx Banks index down 2.8%. That was a much bigger drop than in August and also a larger decline than analysts expected. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 45.26 points, or 0.3 percent, to 18,098.94.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 1.74 percent.

Export order readings in both the National Bureau of Statistics and the Caixin PMIs for September are just slightly above 50, pointing to a modest recovery in external demand.

Minutes from the Federal Reserve’s September meeting confirmed late Wednesday that officials expected to raise rates “relatively soon”, with several members viewing the decision to leave rates unchanged in September as a “close call”.

Gold miners bucked the trend, with Newcrest Mining and Evolution Mining gaining more than 4 percent each.

Oil prices plummeted Thursday after OPEC announced its production in September had increased to the highest level in 8 years, and after reports of a surge in USA crude stockpiles. In the first eight month of the year, 20 countries or regions launched 85 trade investigations against Chinese products, a 49% increase over year-earlier levels, led by the US and India, the ministry said. The king had reigned for 70 years, which made him the longest serving head of state in the world. Japan’s Nikkei 225 lost 0.4 percent to 16,774.24, while South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.9 percent to 2,015.44. Benchmark U.S. crude oil rose 18 cents to $50.36 per barrel in NY. Brent crude, the Global standard, rose 22 cents to $52.03 a barrel in London.

Foreign investors sold 108 million ringgit ($25.7 million) in Malaysian shares on Wednesday, according to Kenanga Research. Both figures were worse than expected, with exports expected to fall 3.3% and imports predicted to rise 0.6%, in USA dollar terms.

The euro was choppy too, dropping under $1.10 for the first time in nearly three months at one point after Reuters reported the European Central Bank was considering a number of changes to its 1.5 trillion euro stimulus programme.