The pending collapse of China’s second biggest property developer, Evergrande, has attracted plenty of media attention this week.

Angry investors have besieged the company’s HQ in the southern Chinese city of Shenzen, demanding their money back.

And now the company says it will let investors bid on the fire sale of its property assets at bargain prices.

Evergrande owns more than 1,300 property projects in over 280 cities in China, but holds US$300 billion of debt on its books.

Australian investors are also watching this development closely, with some analysts flagging concerns that a collapse could have ripple effects and bust China’s property bubble — sapping demand for steel and iron ore even further.

There are also concerns that ensuing negative sentiment from an Evergrande default would plummet all risk-on asset classes, including crypto.

And if you’re worried about China, we asked pro investor James Whelan what he thinks of the Evergrande blow-up and the Chinese investment landscape more broadly.

To the ASX…

The local ASX 200 index is trading lower by 0.64% heading into the midway session.

Miners were especially hit hard, following another 6% plunge in iron ore prices overnight to US$106.50, from record levels of US$233/t in May.

The Mining and Energy sectors were the worst performers this morning, falling by 3.5% and 1.7% respectively.

In large caps, there was broad-brushed selloff in mining stocks, with Fortescue Metals (ASX:FMG) being the biggest laggard in the sector, down 9%. The FMG share price has now lost almost 15% this week on weak China steel demand.

Gold miners also fell as metals took a little dive overnight. Northern Star (ASX:NST) dropped 4.5%, and Newcrest (ASX:NCM) by 3%.

 

ASX SMALL CAP WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for September 17 [intraday]:

 

Papyrus Australia (ASX:PPY)

The waste fibre tech company jumped 30% after announcing the successful trial using its factory-produced refined banana fibre to produce commercial quantities of biodegradable moulded food packaging products in a conventional, off the shelf, moulding machine.

iCetana (ASX:ICE)

The software company surged 30% after announcing a partnership with Panasonic and Macnica in Japan. The companies will combine their respective expertise in video surveillance systems and artificial intelligence.

Heavy Minerals (ASX:HVY)

The company rose 8% following the engagement of a drilling contractor, and will commence a 12,000m, 300-hole Air Core program drilling on September 21st at its wholly owned Port Gregory Garnet Project near Geraldton, WA. The drilling program will last for approximately three months and consist of 12,000m or ~300 Air-Core holes.

Complii Fintech (ASX:CF1)

The company rose 7% after completing its acquisition of trading platform PrimaryMarkets. PrimaryMarkets primarily allows secondary trading of securities of unlisted companies. It also assists companies with capital raising endeavours and share registry requirements.

West Wits Mining (ASX:WWI)

The WWI jumped 15% after announcing the Department of Mineral Resources & Energy has accepted WWI’s application for a new prospecting right at the Witwatersrand Basin Project.

On completion of compliance requirements, WWI would reinstate a substantial proportion of Mineral Resources to the WBP’s current global Mineral Resource Estimate (“MRE”) of 3.55Moz at 4.26 g/t Au.

 

ASX SMALL CAP LOSERS

Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks for September 17 [intraday]:

Venture Minerals (ASX:VMS) dropped more than 30% on the back of the plunge in iron ore price overnight.

The VMS stock price tumbled despite announcing the first shipment of iron ore from its Riley Iron Ore Mine in Tasmania.