Thursday, April 7, 2011

Rare Earth: Molycorp up 10% on the Day; Notches Another All-time High (MCP)

The stock is trading at $68.33, up $6.27 (10.10%).
Think about that all time high verbiage. It means that everyone who is long is at a profit.
[except for Mr. toptick -ed]

There was a reason we said on Monday:
The stock is up 10.45% at $65.44. The prior high was achieved the day after we decided to short the stock (and picked up a triple). We are not looking to repeat that performance just yet....
It is just so dangerous to go short just because something has had a run. As Mr. Buffett points out (from the long side) this game is similar to playing baseball where there are no called strikes.

One of the worst sins in trading is chasing action just to be in the market, as the (variously ascribed) saying goes, "Don't push the river, it flows by itself".

You can just stand there in the batters box, watching blistering fastball after blistering fastball come at you until Mr. Market gives you that high hanging curveball and wham, this game looks easy.

That's a long intro for this news. There is no real news. Here's Motley Fool:
What: Shares of rare-earth element miner Molycorp (NYSE: MCP  ) jumped 10% when a bill to stockpile rare-earth elements was announced in Congress.

So what: Congressman Mike Coffman introduced the bill that would establish a stockpile of rare-earth elements from U.S. sources -- aka Molycorp and someday Rare Element Resources (AMEX: REE  ) . The U.S. military consumes 5% of the world’s rare-earth element production. With China already stockpiling the elements, the bill views this as a point of national security.

Now what: Coffman introduced a similar bill last year that went nowhere and we could be headed for the same result. Opinions on the bill are mixed outside of Congress, including one group of scientists calling a stockpile a disincentive to innovation. The stockpile would also have the effect of increasing prices in the short term while new sources of supply start to ramp up. This is a catalyst short-term, but I’m leery of buying on this news today since a similar bill has failed in Congress before.
I'm almost tempted to do the 9th grade Civics parody: "And that's how a bill becomes a law."
There are a few more steps before it's hip-hip-hooray time.
Fortunately [or not -ed] Senators and Congresscritters are considered essential employees.
Here's Street Insider with some details:
Shares of rare earth stock Molycorp, Inc. (NYSE: MCP) are surging 5 percent higher Thursday after a new bill was introduced by Colorado Congressman Mike Coffman which "seeks to curtail dangerous reliance on China for critical materials".

According to the press release, Coffman's bipartisan bill, H.R. 1388, the Rare Earths Supply-Chain Technology and Resources Transformation Act of 2011 (RESTART Act), would achieve this by reestablishing a domestic rare earth industry in the United States.

"Currently, the world is nearly 100 percent reliant on Chinese exports for these critical materials and China’s trade policies of restricting rare earth exports pose a serious threat to both the economic and national security of the United States," Coffman said.

Key provisions of the legislation include:
  • Directing appropriate federal agencies to expedite the permitting process in order to increase the exploration and development of domestic rare earth elements, without waiving environmental  laws, and establishing a multi-agency Task Force to carry out this process;
  • Setting up a Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) rare earth inventory -- where DLA enters into long-term supply contracts and then makes the supplies available for purchase to federal government contractors -- to generate a domestic market and facilitate the domestic sourcing of rare earth alloys and magnets...MORE