Local stocks have continued their march higher today after another solid session on Wall Street.

There were steady gains at the big end of town while the ASX Emerging Companies Index rose more than one per cent into midday trade.

The moves precede a highly anticipated speech tonight from US Fed Chair Jerome Powell, who is expected to underline the central bank’s commitment to an extended period of low interest rates in a bid to fend off deflation in the US economy.

Speaking of the US, we reckon the Old School scene depicted in today’s picture — where Will Ferrell’s character shoots himself in the neck with a tranquilliser gun and jumps into a swimming pool — is a relatively apt metaphor for overnight developments ‘stateside.

 

Day three of the Republican National Convention is getting into full swing, with vice-president Mike Pence expected to give a speech touting law & order.

Meanwhile, protests continued in Kenosha, Wisconsin, following the police shooting of Jacob Blake. The unrest gave rise to another round of shocking violence, when a 17 year-old armed with a rifle shot and killed two people before being arrested.

Down in Florida, NBA basketball players are sitting out today’s games in the league’s playoff “bubble” to lodge their own protest against the Blake shooting. That was followed by similar moves in the WNBA and Major League baseball.

To cap it off a powerful hurricane is also bearing down on the US Gulf of Mexico and is expected to make landfall this week, in between two of the country’s largest oil refinery hubs.

The potential supply disruption saw oil prices tick higher overnight, while the US dollar gold price briefly climbed back above $US1,950 an ounce.

WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm Thursday August 27:

CODE COMPANY PRICE CHANGE MARKET CAP
YPB YPB Group Ltd 0.005 37.50% $10.7M
BNO Bionomics 0.15 36.36% $68.9M
OVT Ovato 0.016 33.33% $8.8M
TCN Techniche Ltd 0.044 29.41% $7.2M
8CO 8Common 0.12 27.66% $17.2M
ICU Isentric Ltd 0.06 27.66% $10.8M
ROO Roots Sustainable Agricultural DRC 0.031 34.78% $3.7M
WLD Wellard Ltd 0.055 17.02% $25.0M
VBS Vectus Biosystems 1.00 16.96% $20.2M
EX1 Exopharm 0.345 16.95% $28.2M
EN1 Engage:BDR 0.007 16.67% $9.8M
AAJ Aruma Resources Ltd 0.007 16.67% $6.8M
MOC Mortgage Choice 0.835 15.97% $90.0M
MTH Mithril Resources 0.044 15.79% $79.3M
WBT Weebit Nano 0.52 15.56% $47.3M
CE1 Calima Energy 0.008 14.29% $15.2M
PWN Parkway Minerals 0.008 14.29% $12.0M
TKL Traka Resources Ltd 0.024 14.29% $9.7M
DEG De Grey Mining 1.01 14.12% $1.1B

Product authentication company YPB Group (ASX:YPB) ticked higher on some positive China news, after signing two three-year supply contracts with companies in Suzhou and Beijing.

The deals are expected to add “a minimum of A75,000 in revenue, with possible upside in years two and three”, YPB said.

Regenerative medicine company Exopharm (ASX:EX1) was also among the winners, after coming out of a six-day trading halt in the wake of its full-year results yesterday to announce the completion of a $10m share placement to institutional and high net worth investors.

LOSERS

Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm Thursday August 27:

CODE COMPANY PRICE CHANGE MARKET CAP
QFY Quantify Tech 0.001 -33.33% $2.0M
ANW Aus Tin Mining Ltd 0.001 -33.33% $3.1M
TLM Talisman Mining 0.105 -27.59% $20.5M
LCY Legacy Iron Ore 0.004 -20.00% $25.0M
CZL Consolidated Zinc 0.004 -20.00% $10.0M
MRD Mount Ridley Mines Ltd 0.002 -20.00% $5.4M
AFR African Energy Resources 0.018 -18.18% $11.2M
TEG Triangle Energy (Global) 0.032 -17.95% $11.5M
UCW UCW 0.115 -17.86% $13.5M
DAF Discovery Africa Ltd 0.027 -15.63% $5.5M
RAN Range International 0.011 -15.38% $4.0M
AOU Auroch Minerals NL 0.074 -14.94% $14.0M
AVW Avira Energy 0.006 -14.29% $9.6M
XST Xstate Resources Ltd 0.003 -14.29% $4.4M
RDH Redhill Education Ltd 0.455 -14.15% $27.0M
APX Appen Ltd 37.59 -13.59% $5.3B
HWK Hawkstone Mining 0.02 -13.04% $28.1M
LPD Lepidico 0.007 -12.50% $41.5M
NOV Novatti Group 0.265 -11.67% $67.8M