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A file photo of Agnico-Eagle Mines Ltd. in the Abitibi region of northwestern Quebec. (HO)
A file photo of Agnico-Eagle Mines Ltd. in the Abitibi region of northwestern Quebec. (HO)

Small Caps

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Agnico-Eagle Mines Ltd. struck fresh 52-week lows while Grayd Resource Corp. was up nearly 10 per cent after announcing that Agnico-Eagle will amend the offer it made for all of the outstanding shares of Grayd, doubling the maximum amount of cash offered to approximately $183-million. The maximum number of common shares of Agnico-Eagle under the offer is unchanged at approximately 2.7 million. The board of directors of Grayd has unanimously reconfirmed its recommendation that Grayd shareholders tender their shares. Grayd fell 8 per cent to $2.30 a share yesterday after Agnico-Eagle said its was indefinitely suspending operations at its Goldex mine in Quebec because of water inflow and ground instability. In a statement, Grayd management said it was reviewing the situation and will make further statements once it concludes that work.

Perpetual Energy Inc. has struck a record low of $1.63 a share with close to 1.8 million shares traded, three times more than an average trading volume of around 620,000 for the last 30 days. Late Wednesday, the company said it was indefinitely suspending its monthly dividend, blaming ongoing weakness in natural gas prices. Perpetual also said the retained funds will help speed the company's efforts to diversify its commodity and asset base. The company last paid a 1.5 cent per share dividend to shareholders of record on Sept. 30 and, overall, has paid $14.519 per share in cumulative dividends and distributions since inception.

Intellectual property company Mosaid Technologies Inc. edged back closer to 52-week highs after saying yesterday that it has advised shareholders not to take any action until further notice with regard to an announcement by Wi-LAN Inc. that it has increased its unsolicited offer by 11 per cent to $42 per share, pushing its offer to around $500-million. The latest offer of $42 per share reflects a premium of nearly 40 per cent to Mosaid's trading price before Wi-Lan made its initial bid in August.

Canadian uranium explorer Hathor Exploration Ltd. today hit levels not seen for more than three years as it continued to benefit from yesterday's news that Rio Tinto Group, the world's third largest mining company, has agreed to pay $4.15 per share in cash, or $578-million, to acquire it, trumping a hostile bid by Cameco Corp. . Rio's offer represented a 55 per cent premium to Hathor's closing share price on Aug. 25, the day before Cameco made its $3.75 per share bid. Hathor's board unanimously recommended investors accept the latest bid, having previously said investors should reject Cameco's "predatory" offer.

Coalspur Mines Ltd. shares were ahead about 6 per cent in early TSX trading, matching its overnight advance on the Australian Stock Exchange after saying the bankable feasibility study for its Vista coal project in Alberta will show a 24 per cent increase in likely annual production. Production is seen rising from 9 million tons yearly as predicted in the company's pre-feasibility study to 11.2 million tons per year in the new guidance. The miner said the ongoing positive results illustrate the Vista's potential to become Canada's largest exporter of thermal coal, adding the bankable study is progressing on schedule and will be ready for publication in early 2012 following completion at the end of 2011.

Primary Petroleum Corp. dropped more than 10 per cent in early trade Thursday after saying it has closed on its $48.5-million sale to a "major U.S.-based industry partner" of a 32.5 per cent working interest in the company's 291,000 net acres in Western Montana. The unnamed joint venture partner paid $7.5-million in cash at closing and will fully fund a $41-million initial exploration program, consisting of shooting 3-D seismic and drilling vertical and horizontal wells and expected to be completed by the end of 2012. The joint venture Partner is scheduled to become operator at the project once it reaches the horizontal program.

Gran Colombia Gold Corp. has filed the mineral resource estimate for its Marmato project in Colombia, which shows a measured and indicated resource of 10 million ounces of gold. The estimate, first reported by the company in early September, also shows an additional 2.4 million ounces of gold in the Inferred category. The study also found an estimated 64 million ounces of silver in the measured and indicated categories along with another 11 million ounces of silver in the Inferred category. This new in-pit mineral resource represents a 51 per cent increase in measured and indicated gold ounces and a 73 per cent increase in measured and indicated silver ounces compared to the previous mineral estimates.

Canadian Energy Exploration Inc. , which has been trading near a year low of 2.5 cents, said it hired a new chief financial officer, Samantha Petersen, who had been working with the junior oil and gas company since February as its consulting controller. According to the company, Ms. Petersen articled at Ernst & Young while earning her designation as a Chartered Accountant earlier this year, during which time she worked in the Mergers and Acquisitions, Restructuring and Audit practices division.

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