Hello darkness volatility my old friend. It’s a new week, and stocks are getting belted.

Giddy up, because the liquidity assumptions underpinning post-COVID markets appear to have had their first little test.

Last week, we highlighted that ‘2024 at the earliest’ for the next interest rate rise is out. The US Fed now expects a couple of rate rises in 2023.

But on Friday night, US Fed committee member Jim Bullard came to the party by adding that rate rises were a natural response to inflation and economic growth. Instead of 2023, he flagged 2022 for the next possible hike.

US stocks promptly slumped following Bullard’s comments, and the selloff has flowed through to Asian trade to start the week.

Big banks, which make up the largest component of the ASX, are getting smashed, with Commonwealth Bank (ASX:CBA) on track for its worst day since June 11, 2020 after announcing the sale of its general insurance business.

Major miners are also being sold off, and gold stocks aren’t being spared as big gains for the US dollar saw the price of USD-gold fall back below US$1,800.

Crypto markets never sleep and in response to the prospect of liquidity tightening, Bitcoin fell hard over the weekend to currently be trading at around US$35,000.

However, the beacon of high-tech growth — Afterpay (ASX:APT) — is sailing smoothly at around $114 after a small gain in morning trade.

WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm Monday, June 21:

Swipe or scroll to reveal the full table. Click headings to sort.


Winners were few and far between among stocks with market-moving announcements, but mining services company Swick (ASX:SWK) gained after announcing it will restart demerger plans with Orexplore Technologies, as a way to unlock more value for shareholders.

The company also flagged a full-year revenue upgrade for FY21 based on the strength of its order book.

Also posting a tidy gain was graphite company BlackEarth Minerals (ASX:BEM), which announced an offtake agreement with an Austrian company to provide “2,500 tonnes per annum of expandable graphite worth around US$7.5m per annum”, upon completion of its plant development.

LOSERS

Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm Monday, June 21:

Swipe or scroll to reveal the full table. Click headings to sort.