That confidence began to slip with the share price today as not one newspaper or Website in the region carried a single word about the Joint Ministerial Council meeting in Abuja, and even UpstreamOnline's Barry Morgan was not confident enough to predict a possible date after being burned so many times by his sources in the Joint Development Authority.
As the unprofessional and highly suspicious delays continue, JDA spokesman Sam Dimka has become more and more evasive in his conversations with orangeandwhite0, even while promising hope that is never realized.
Are we worried? Not enough to sell, but yes. The only consistent pattern we hsve discerned in the awards process of the Nigeria-Sao Tome and Principe Joint Development Authority is mystery, obfuscation, evasion and delay. It is as though the only experience in business the Nigerians and Sao Tomese have is the 419 scam, which makes abundant use of all those qualities in perpetrating it against millions of unsuspecting people around the world. ironically, I received one from a Nigerian this morning who identified himself as "Olesengun Obasanjo", used the Subject: header "From the President," and carried a two-line message advising me that the funds can be transferred in two days. There was an attachment I didn't bother to open. Note, please, that the president's first name was misspelled.
This has been, as we said before, a nightmare process, and one appropriate only to a backward Third World nation that has no business trying tio play on the world stage.
And now for today's Trading Updates.
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Update, 4:18pm EDT, 4/29/05: The final tally: The closing price was $0.82, the Bid, and the Ask was $0.825, for a $0.02 loss for the day - not bad, in my view, considering that the lack of news was bad news indeed. There were 440 trades, with 30,000 after hours in Form T trading, the last two of those buys at $0.825 of 10,000 each at 4:02:14 and 4:02:24. The earlier two were a 4:01:38 buy at $0.825 and a sale at $0.82 of 5,000 at 4:01:41. For the day, the Buy volume was 1,257,229 and the Sell volume was 1,445,256, and 78,875 shares were unidentified. The after-hours sales brought the total volume to 2,765,400 shares.
For ERHC On The Move, our loss for the day was $2,460.80, bringing our net profit on 123,040 shares averaging $0.4394 to $46,645.32. The blog has had one of its busiest weeks ever, with 14,601 visitors, and 442 clicks generating $156,59.
Since Feb. 3, when we added advertising, we've had 110,846 visitors - an average of 1,288 for all those days - and income of $483.89, an average of $5.63 a day. Thank you for this tremendous level of support!
Update, 4pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price is $0.82, the Ask $0.825 and the Bid $0.82 as the volume hits 2,781,400 in the last minute of trading.
Update, 3:57pm EDT, 4/29/05: Holding at $0.82, the Bid, on 2,745,400 shares and an Ask of $0.825.
Update, 3:57pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price is back to $0.825, off $0.015, with the Bid and Ask at $0.82 x $0.825, on climbing volume of 2,731,700 shares.
Update, 3:55pm EDT, 4/29/05: With volume at 2,710,400, the price is $0.82, the Bid, and the Ask is $0.825.
Update, 3:53pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price slips to $0.825, the Bid, and the Ask is at $0.83 on 2,705,400 shares of volume.
Update, 3:51pm EDT, 4/29/05: Volume rising to 2,679,300 as Sells again dominate Buys, a second reversal in the past half hour, with Buys of 1,169,729 to Sells of 1,359,156 and 78.875 shres unidentified, at 3:31, on 398 trades.
Update, 3:49pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price is $0.83 on 2,670,800 shares of volume. The Bid and Ask are $0.82 x $0.83.
Update, 3:46pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price improves to $0.825, the new Bid is $0.82, and the Ask is $0.83 again, on volume of 2,655,800 shares.
Update, 3:43pm EDT, 4/29/05: The Bid slips again to $0.815, as the price falls to $0.82, on volume of 2,650,800 shares.
Update, 3:40pm EDT, 4/29/05: Bid and Ask slip to $0.82 x $0.821, with the price at $0.825, on a difference of just 4,500 shares; volume is now 2,630,800.
Update, 3:39pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price is still $0.83 but the Bid has slipped to $0.825 and the Ask is lower at $0.83, with volume of 2,626,300 shares.
Update, 3:37pm EDT, 4/29/05: Buys now dominate Sells - a dramatic reversal in the past half-hour - as of 3:21pm EDT, by 1,133,279 to 1,306,122, with 78,875 shares unidentified in 374 trades.
Update, 3:35pm EDT, 4/29/05: Volume is 2,607,800 shares and all else is unchanged.
Update, 3:32pm EDT, 4/29/05: Now we're at $0.83, the Bid, with an $0.835 Ask and 2,606,800 shares traded - a nice jump in volume.
Update, 3:26pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price is lower at $0.835. The Ask has slipped to $0.84 while the Bid holds at $0.835 on 2,545,000 shares.
Update, 3:23pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price slips to $0.84 while the Bid and Ask remain unchanged and volume inches up to 2,518,300 - just 100 shares changed the Ask a tenth of a cent to $0.844. It took 100,000 shares to accomplish that last November.
Update, 3:21pm EDT, 4/29/05: No one wants to sell, and buyers don't want to riase the Bid from $0.835. Volume is unchanged.
Update, 3:18pm EDT, 4/29/05: Volume 2,518,200 and price holding at $0.845, putting us back in the green zone for the day.
Update, 3:15pm EDT, 4/29/05: The 3:15 surge arrives with a price jump to $0.845, and the Bid moved up to $0.835, while the Ask goes to $0.845 and volume rises to 2,516,200 shares.
Update, 3:13pm EDT, 4/29/05: The Ask moves up to $0.84 after 6000 shares are sold, bringing volume to 2,508,700.
Update, 3:11pm EDT, 4/29/05: Price, Bid, Ask and volume unchanged.
Update, 3:08pm EDT, 4/29/05: We're hearing two rumors now: First, that ERHE was recommended by the JDA for operatorships in Blocks 2, 3 an 4, and the second, that ERHE has won exclusive operatorship of Block 2. The first, a private message, is the more likely; the second comes from a new poster on ERHE who is unknown to all. The 3:15 surge approaches.
Update, 3:04pm EDT, 4/29/05: A little improvement now as we hit the last hour of trading, with the price back to $0.835, volume now 2.5 million, the Bid at $0.83 and the Ask higher at $0.835.
Update, 3pm EDT, 4/29/05: It wasn't long ago that no institutions at all bought or held ERHE and its predecessor, ERHC, and today I-Watch, which monitors institutional and retail buying says institutional buying has accounted for 14 percent of the action today, compared to 7 percent on average. The increase paced the noon-hour surge to $0.86 we saw. At 3pm, volume is 2,496,700, the price is $0.825, the Bid better at $0.825, and the Ask $0.83.
Update, 2:52pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price slips to $0.622, the Bid, while the Ask slips to $0.825 on 2,465,600 shares. The big news on CNN is the arrest of a mom who stabbed each of her two very young children 100 times or more.
Update, 2:50pm EDT, 4/29/05: At 2:25, there were 1,084,785 Buys and 1,261,622 Sells, with 76,275 shares unidentified in 345 trades. The price is back to $0.83 at 2:49pm EDT, with the Bid lower at $0.820 and the Ask $0.83. Volume is 2,461,600 shares.
Update, 2:44pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price is back to $0.83, the Ask, while the Bid is at $0.825 on 2,458,100 shares of volume.
Update, 2:41pm EDT, 4/29/05: The Bid and price have slipped to $0.825 on 2,447,100 shares, while the Ask stays at $0.83.
Update, 2:37pm EDT, 4/29/05: Price up to $0.835 now, a half-cent loss for the day. The Bid is at $0.825, the Ask $0.83, and volume has climbed to 2,435,100. The 3:15pm surge is approaching, and that could be meaningful on a Friday. The last time awards were granted, they were made on a Saturday. We noted earlier that ERHE investor/founder Phil Nugent's GEECF was up 29 percent or $0.21, but it has now fallen back, and is up $0.07 at $0.78.
Update, 2:30pm EDT, 4/29/05: Traders are giving up on awards today. Volume, which was rising quickly, has slowed, and share prices are static within a two- or three-cent range. All measures unchanged in the last several minutes.
Update, 2:28pm EDT, 4/29/05: Bid, Ask and Volume are unchanged.
Update, 2:26pm EDT, 4/29/05: Volume is now 2,422,700 and the price is still at the Bid, $0.83, while the Ask has slipped back a half cent to $0.835.
Update, 2:22pm EDT, 4/29/05: Our last price improvement's come on a mere 3,000 shares, and that's been typical of trading today. The good thing is that, with news, the lability in price means we can shoot up 20 or 30 cents with little difficulty if the news is good. Market makers are prepared, just as we are, for good news or bad.
Update, 2:21pm EDT, 4/29/05: Is this the calm before the storm? The volume today is more than double yesterday's, and that's one indication something may break in Abuja. The fact that Sells are dominating trades may be less important than the steady and substantial size of Buys. We've now moved up to $0.83 once again, with Bid now higher at $0.83 and the Ask at $0.84.
Update, 2:17pm EDT, 4/29/05: Despite some substantial buying in the past hour, at 1:57 Sells lead Buys by 1,131,122 shares to 1,046,265, with 76,275 unidentified, on some 356 trades. Our price is $0.825, the Bid higher at $0.822, and the Ask still at $0.83. Volume at 2:15pm is still 2,407,200, unchanged.
Update, 2:09pm EDT, 4/29/05: The price is $0.825 as the Bid slips to $0.82. Ask is $0.83 and volume is unchanged at 2,407,200. Lots of weird exchanges on RB.
Update, 2:07pm EDT, 4/29/05: After hitting an intraday high of $0.86 in my absence, we'e now at $0.825, the Ask at $0.83, and the Bid also at $0.825. Volume is 2,407,200, jumping nicely.
Update, 1:59pm EDT, 4/29/05: On CNN, they're saying traders are confused about the state of the economy and that as a result, prices are jumping around quite a bit. On the way back from the hospital, I was refining my list of the qualities that characterize the operations of the Joint Development Authority: Mystery, Confusion, Obfuscation, Evasion and Delay. Sounds like a Texas law firm! We're now at $0.82, with the Bid $0.82, the Ask $0.825 and volume of 2,253,700 shares.
Update, 1:54pm EDT, 4/29/05: Back to $0.82, with the Ask now down, too, to $0.83 and the Bid at $0.82. Volume jumped to 2,243,700.
Update, 1:53pm EDT, 4/29/05: We're back! Up to $0.84 now, with the Ask at $0.84 and the Bid at $0.835. Volume has shot up - a very good sign - to 2,199,900. My brother needed two units of blood, but he'll feel a lot better tomorrow..
Update, 11:41am EDT, 4/29/05: My brother is blacking out, so I have to take him to the hospital. I'll be back around 1pm in all likelihood, and maybe earlier.
Stay tuned to Raging Bull's ERHE message board for news that could come at noon.
The price is now $0.81, with the new Bid at $0.81 and a new Ask at $0.82, on volume of 958,347 shares.
Update, 11:37am EDT, 4/29/05: The price still at $0.83, the Bid drops to $0.81, while the Ask stays at $0.83, on 949,747 shares of volume, which is picking up.
Update, 11:34am EDT, 4/29/05: We're back at $0.83, while volume moves to 903,457 and the Bid and Ask remain unchanged at $0.825 x $0.83.
Update, 11:31am EDT, 4/29/05: The price slips to $0.825 but the Bid improves to0 $0.825 and the Ask slips to $0.83 on volume of 892,247 shares. There's a growing sense new may be coming today.
Update, 11:29am EDT, 4/29/05: The price moves up to $0.835, the new Ask, and the Bid stays at $0.82, while volume reaches 887,247. The volume is getting strong and positive.
Update, 11:28am EDT, 4/29/05: The price is now $0.83, the Ask, while the Bid stays at $0.82 on volume of 837,747 shares.
Update, 11:26am EDT, 4/29/05: Trading at $0.82 now, the Bid is $0.82 and the Ask is up to $0.83. Volume is up 5K to 815,247.
Update, 11:24am EDT, 4/29/05: The bid is better at $0.81, and volume is 810,247. The Ask is still at $0.82.
Update, 11:20am EDT, 4/29/05: The price bounced back to $0.82 and then to $0.80, the Bid, while the Ask is better at $0.82 on volume of 810,247 shares.
Update, 11:15am EDT, 4/29/05: The Ask has slipped to $0.81, the price, while the Bis is still at $0.802. Volume is 776,747 shares.
Update, 11:13am EDT, 4/29/05: Volume is at 770,147 with the p[rice $0.81, the bid, and the Ask unchanged at $0.82.
Update, 11:09am EDT, 4/29/05: Breaking news on CNN about messages from the Baghdad branch of Al-Qaeda, which seems to communicate more regularly with the world than the JDA does. Eleven car bombs have gone off this morning after President Bush's news conference on the Iraqi security recruitment successes last night. The insurgents are targeting the ability of the U.S. and the new Iraqi government to continue recruiting Iraqi police and soldiers, who are establishing a toehold at last. The price is $0.81, a cent better, and the Bid has climbed again to $0.802 as the Ask moves to $0.82.
Update, 11am EDT, 4/29/05: The price is better at $0.0802, but the Bid is lower at $0.80, on volume of 748,882, The Ask is unchanged at $0.81.
Update, 10:57am EDT, 4/29/05: The Bid has climbed two-tenths to $0.802, while the Ask is at $0.81 on the same volume.
Update, 10:54am EDT, 4/29/05: Volume now 745,882, the price and Bid $0.80, while the Ask has fallen to $0.81. We may test a new low of the day soon, just as we did yesterday morning before closing $0.055 higher.
Update, 10:51am EDT, 4/29/05: The price and Bid have slipped to $0.80, while the Ask stays at $0.62, on volume of 733,582.
Update, 10:46am EDT, 4/29/05: The price climbs back up a cent to $0.82. Just noticed that ERHE founding investor Phil Nugent's GEECF has shot up more than 29 percent from $0.71, up $0.21 to $0.92, on just 38,730 shares of volume. He is a major ERHE shareholder.
Update, 10:46am EDT, 4/29/05: The price is holding at $0.81, while volume is climbing pretty dramatically to 719,592. The Ask remains at $0.82.
Update, 10:40am EDT, 4/29/05: Volume is 685,592, with the Bid and Ask unchanged. ERHC On The Move is not going to sell shares despite the very strong temptation to take our $45,414.93 profit and head for for greener pastures.
Update, 10:37am EDT, 4/29/05: The price has slipped back to $0.81, the new Bid, while the Ask stays at $0.82 and volume reaches 681,592.
Update, 10:30am EDT, 4/29/05: The only news is a second-hand message from gwv2 on the Raging Bull ERHE message board, to wit:
****Spoke with Sam Dinka****
Meetings were adjourned last night. Awards going foward. he would not speculate ( his words) as to when. I asked specifically if the blocks were going to be re-bid and he said no, awards will be announced. For those of you who would like to verify his number is 011-234-9-524-1069
Update, 10:26am EDT, 4/29/05: The price has moved to $0.815, above the $0.815 bid, and the Ask is unchanged at $0.82 on volume of 532,382.
Update, 10:24am EDT, 4/29/05: The price has slipped to $0.81, while the Bid is higher at $0.815, and the Ask remains at $0.82, on volume of 531,392 shares.
Update, 10:18am EDT, 4/29/05: The price is $0.82, a $0.02 slip from yesterday's $0.84 close, on good volume of 506,382 shares. The Bid is $0.815 and the Ask $0.82.