Take physic, pomp

ATW Gold (ATW.v): Once a Canaccord broker, always a Canaccord broker

Luke Norman (for it is he)
On Sept 11, ATW Gold (ATW.v) came out with this PR that contained stock-dumping news. The badstuff was basically wrapped into this section….

As a result of the drill program, supplemented with recent underground mapping, multiple northeastern fault splays previously not recognized in earlier drilling were identified. These splays have a profound effect in controlling mineralization and recent mining has encountered vein offsets of up to 15m.

This complexity is currently affecting the mining dilution which is negatively impacting the mill head grade. This structural complexity affected the last two gold pours of August, returning only 1,865 fine ounces of gold for the month. Production for September is forecast to be in the order of 2,100oz.

…that explained the company had hit a geological wrinkle at its Burnakura mine and that production would be problematic for a while until the geological structure was understood and they knew where to dig to continue mining their mineral vein. Ok, fair enough, mining isn’t an exact science, these things happen. It’s certainly not the end of the world for a decent operator like ATW.v and the mining is very likely to get back on its full course in the future, but on the other hand the stock sell-off was clearly justified under the circumstances.

What isn’t justified, however, is an insider dumping half a million shares on the market just before the news came out.

ATW Gold Corp. (ATW)

As of September 17th, 2009
Filing Date Transaction Date Insider Name Ownership Type Securities Nature of transaction # or value acquired or disposed of Unit Price
Sep 17/09 Aug 27/09 Norman, Luke Anthony Direct Ownership Common Shares 10 – Disposition in the public market -500,000 $0.540

Luke Norman is a director and the VP of Corporate Development at ATW.v. But as leopards have spots, Norman showed his formation to all the world. He started as a trainee stockbroker at the tender age of 16 and worked at the par excellance me-first-screw-you dealers, Canaccord, for four years before joining ATW.v. So rather than maintain a dignified attitude towards his salary generators (ie ATW and its shareholders), Norman reverted to his mean, dumped a large chunk of stock before anyone else had the chance and then waited until after the Sept 11th press release to late-file his trade. Since Luke Norman’s sale, ATW.v has dropped 25.9%.

Or maybe you think a dyed-in-the-wool ex-stockbroker with the inside track on company matters who makes his first insider trading move since April 2008 by selling 500,000 shares just before a large slug of bad corporate news is a mere coincidence. My bridge is still for sale, by the way. Please send a mail.

Just another day in Canadian capital markets, folks. And the dumbass suits wonder why they have such a bad rep……..

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