Last year toilet paper was the hot commodity Australians hoarded, now it is COVID antigen tests.

Australian medical regulators were late to approve rapid antigen tests, only doing so in October this year.

Escalating case numbers and extensive queues for state funded PCR tests – some of which are only being done for domestic travel purposes – have led to people wanting to take matters into their own hands.

But packs have been selling out across NSW and Victoria — hindered by global supply chain issues even before the current omicron outbreak.

National Cabinet today will reportedly address the shortage, among other issues.

Speaking of hot commodities, there’s set to be plenty of them in Boxing Day – which is only four sleeps away. The Commonwealth Bank released research yesterday showing Australians planned to spend an average of $550, which would be up 14% from a year ago.

After months of being locked down at home, the majority of customers are planning to go in store — with 41% wanting to go in-store alone with another 28% planning to shop both in-store and online.

And across December as a whole, CBA customers are likely to spend 22% more in December relative to the average of all other months of the year.

To equity markets…

The ASX 200 fell by 0.22% to 7,339 points.

Tech and travel stocks rebounded on easing concerns over inflation and omicron. BNPL leader Afterpay (ASX:APT) jumped by around 5% following a 7.69% gain for its (soon to be) owner Block Inc (formerly Square).

 

ASX SMALL CAP WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for December 22 [intraday]:

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Penny tech stock AppsVillage (ASX:APV) told shareholders it received conditional approval to list on the TSX Venture Exchange in Canada and had obtained CA$2.9 million in financing.

In the energy sector, Winchester Energy (ASX:WEL) reported achieving US$996,507 ($1.4 million) in gross gas revenue accurals for the month of November.

 

ASX SMALL CAP LOSERS

Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks for December 22 [intraday]:

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Step One (ASX:STP) fell after telling shareholders it had identified a possible overclaim of GST credits on an Australian supply made by a foreign corporation which was not previously identified and it would have a $1.6 million impact pre-tax.

Potash aspirant Kalium Lakes (ASX:KLL) dropped after a shareholder update in which it revealed potassium salts harvested this year would be lower than initially targeted.