Mt Everest – it’s great, isn’t it?

 

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It’s supposed to be the ultimate bucket list, but nowadays it’s not so much the crippling cold and altitude sickness that keeps nutjobs away so much as the average US$55k it costs them to get there.

Still, on a clear week last month, an estimated 500 regular folk achieved what just 70 years ago was thought to be impossible when George Mallory Tenzing Norgay Edmund Hillary became the first human to reach the summit.

Nowadays, you’re left queued up in the 28,000-foot “Death Zone” for your ultimate selfie, but the chances are excellent you’ll get it.

Unless you’re one of the unlucky ones. Everest claims an average of five climbers’ lives each year, but 2023 has claimed a solid 11 so far.

Last week, it nearly got a 50-year-old woman from central China’s Hunan province, identified by the surname Liu. She toppled over near the top, unconscious, and was left for dead.

Don’t get too upset. Being left for dead on Everest is not only part of the deal you sign on for, it’s actually considered improper and dangerous to rescue someone consigned to the big Esky in the sky.

Lucky for Liu, a Sherpa guide and the man he was escorting, Fan Jiangtao, couldn’t just stand by and watch. They both abandoned their attempt and moved Liu into a safe space, then went for help.

Another kindly chap, Xie Ruxiang, also abandoned his plan to reach the summit. Here’s where it gets morally shady. Shadier even than blowing a year’s wages on climbing a big hill, and casually leaving humans to die.

Xie’s Sherpa also agreed to help, but only for US$10k – the average fee a Sherpa gets each time they take the piss out of this whole charade by effortlessly running up and down the mountain loaded with gas bottles, tents and food.

In this case, Xie Sherpa’s CARRIED LIU ON HIS BACK down to base camp.

Liu survived. And, as it turned out, she was on her way down, so she’d also achieved the ultimate goal. For too-rich idiots. All that was left was to pay Xie’s Sherpa $US10k for carrying her back to life.

Aaaand that was a fat No from Liu.

“For the rescue fee of US$10,000, Liu said she would only pay US$4,000,” Fan told the SCMP.

“What she said angered me. I told her, ‘Since that is your attitude, I don’t want a cent from you. You don’t need to give me any money.’”

Fan, who prepped for 40 days and coughed up US$56,000 to summit Everest, only to walk away from his dream and save Liu instead, ended up chipping in for the rescue fee.

Now that’s cold.

 

TO MARKETS

Unlike the Indian batting line-up last night, the ASX 200 opened well and has continued to build decent ebbing-and-flowing partnerships ever since.

Using a combination of Duckworth-Lewis-Stern calculations and a very quick Google, we’ve been able to ascertain that the bourse is up 0.35% at this stage of the day’s play. Here’s the batting “worm” at the time of writing…

It’s a funny game, though, the stock market. It’s a team sport, you see, full of individual performances and two halveses. With that in mind, then, let’s see which sectors are shoring up their position and which ones are in danger of being sent home to play on the Xbox instead…

Unsurprisingly (if you’ve read Eddy’s Market Highlights this morning), IT is leading the way, mirroring some very strong performance from Wall Street tech stocks overnight. Materials and Real Estate have put some some handy runs on the bourse, too.

Mitchell St… er, I mean Energy – what’s doing? We know you’ve got it in you, so we’ll expect more in the next innings. You, too, Utilities.

Here’s the scorecard:

 

ASX SMALL CAP WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for June 9 [intraday]:

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

Code Company Price % Volume Market Cap
LME Limeade Inc. 0.405 305% 12,604,834 $25,753,771
MQR Marquee Resource Ltd 0.032 45% 32,486,098 $7,198,565
ADS Adslot Ltd. 0.004 33% 127,025 $6,613,045
MCT Metalicity Limited 0.002 33% 1,881,069 $5,604,129
ICL Iceni Gold 0.1225 32% 2,072,013 $19,397,143
VRX VRX Silica Ltd 0.14 27% 1,083,715 $61,644,333
ADV Ardiden Ltd 0.0075 25% 1,139,952 $16,130,012
BSN Basin Energy 0.15 20% 210,722 $7,503,751
EPM Eclipse Metals 0.012 20% 1,695,402 $20,280,598
PL3 Patagonia Lithium 0.2 18% 390,289 $8,330,595
AXI Axiom Properties 0.054 17% 67,314 $19,904,828
MDX Mindax Limited 0.076 17% 489,830 $132,961,321
BATDA Battery Minerals Ltd 0.105 17% 269,117 $10,675,761
FNX Finexia Financialgrp 0.28 17% 15,200 $11,511,739
CHK Cohiba Min Ltd 0.0035 17% 1,010,574 $6,339,733
ICR Intelicare Holdings 0.014 17% 64,688 $2,506,985
LDX Lumos Diagnostics 0.014 17% 1,479,526 $3,713,041
MRQ Mrg Metals Limited 0.0035 17% 82,500 $5,957,756
ZEU Zeus Resources Ltd 0.052 16% 9,299,614 $19,725,525
ETR Entyr Limited 0.015 15% 526,959 $22,540,129
BLZ Blaze Minerals Ltd 0.023 15% 7,157,498 $9,150,165
ASP Aspermont Limited 0.016 14% 890,000 $34,035,220
DLM Dominion Minerals 0.032 14% 253,619 $5,798,814
GAL Galileo Mining Ltd 0.61 14% 529,562 $105,729,336
MGT Magnetite Mines 0.455 14% 157,206 $30,335,284
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Some standout plays from some form players, from the first couple of sessions today:

The runaway winner is Limeade (ASX:LME). The mental wellness stock surged more than 300% this morning after the company announced it will be 100% acquired by US-based WebMD Health Services, part of WebMD Health Corp for an all-cash deal valuing the company at ~$112 million.

WebMD will acquire 100% of the shares/CDIs in the employee wellbeing company for cash of $0.425 per share/CDI. The offer price represents a *rubs glasses* 325% premium to the last traded price of Limeade and a 217% premium to the 30-day volume-weighted average price (VWAP) to June 7, 2023.

And Marquee Resources (ASX:MQR) is finishing the week on a high after $13.5bn capped miner MinRes (ASX:MIN) agreed to accelerate the farm-in agreement over the lithium-only rights at MQR’s West Spargoville Project (WSP).

WSP is in the Southern Yilgarn of WA, which also hosts the 26Mt Bald Hill mine, MIN’s own 71Mt Mt Marion mine, Liontown Resources’ (ASX:LTR) 15Mt Buldania project and Essential Metals’ (ASX:ESS) 11.2Mt Pioneer Dome project.

MIN recently built a blocking stake in ESS to prevent the tiddler from being acquired by IGO (ASX:IGO) and its partner in arms, China’s Tianqi.

Chris Ellison’s firm has now acquired an initial 25% interest in the lithium rights at WSP by funding ~$4.8m on exploration in less than 12 months.

The companies will now form a Joint Venture (JV) with two options on the table; processing farm in, or a mining farm in.

 

And the Losers:

Here are the most-worst performing ASX small cap stocks for June 9 [intraday]:

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

Code Company Price % Volume Market Cap
MTL Mantle Minerals Ltd 0.001 -50% 37,500 $12,294,892
PRMDG Deferred Settlement 0.013 -35% 128,799 $2,424,609
AYM Australia United Min 0.002 -33% 281,250 $5,527,732
CLE Cyclone Metals 0.001 -33% 20,000 $15,396,757
AHN Athena Resources 0.003 -25% 996,666 $4,281,870
AJQ Armour Energy Ltd 0.003 -25% 1,729,689 $19,685,368
CHK Cohiba Min Ltd 0.003 -25% 6,837,192 $8,452,977
MCT Metalicity Limited 0.0015 -25% 42,933 $7,472,172
AOA Ausmon Resorces 0.004 -20% 1,194,679 $4,846,447
SFG Seafarms Group Ltd 0.004 -20% 2,914,765 $24,182,996
DLT Delta Drone Intl Ltd 0.013 -19% 4,250,034 $8,275,260
CHR Charger Metals 0.4 -18% 883,069 $21,420,040
DCX Discovex Res Ltd 0.0025 -17% 1,000,000 $9,907,704
MRD Mount Ridley Mines 0.0025 -17% 851,868 $23,354,649
ALV Alvomin 0.325 -16% 5,562,462 $20,801,522
SGC Sacgasco Ltd 0.011 -15% 9,784,771 $8,004,411
RFX Redflow Limited 0.195 -15% 892,581 $41,348,103
CPT Cipherpoint Limited 0.006 -14% 7,913 $8,114,692
LDX Lumos Diagnostics 0.012 -14% 534,101 $4,331,881
MXC Mgc Pharmaceuticals 0.006 -14% 539,255 $23,447,851
OAR OAR Resources Ltd 0.003 -14% 1,196,666 $8,998,633
KNG Kingsland Minerals 0.335 -14% 413,780 $12,261,538
IRX Inhalerx Limited 0.043 -14% 79,420 $9,488,348
RR1 Reach Resources Ltd 0.013 -13% 30,422,653 $41,325,760
AX8 Accelerate Resources 0.02 -13% 18,912 $8,684,840
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See you at the close.