As global stocks tread water coming off the Easter break, the ASX continues to hold its ground as local stocks edged higher on Thursday.

While the ASX 200 edged higher by around 0.2%, the microcap Emerging Companies index got another trim to trade ~0.15% lower following yesterday’s +1% drop.

Speaking of trims, some amusing news out of Texas where a bunch of state troopers have been told to shape up or ship out.

Pic: Giphy.com

According to documents obtained by the Dallas Morning News, around 200 state troopers are under scrutiny.

The waist size rules have been handed down; +40 inches for men and +35 inches for women.

Anyone who breaches those standards will have to track and report their weight loss efforts. Failure to slim down could result in promotion pass overs or even outright dismissal…

Back on the ASX, financial and energy stocks are helping the local market stay in shape, as the major resources indexes dipped for the second straight day.

Gold miners are up though, but tech stocks are feeling the heat following a tough session for the Nasdaq overnight led by the 35% slump for tech giant Netflix.

Afterpay parent Block Inc (ASX:SQ2) highlighted the tech malaise on Thursday with an early fall of more than 6%.

In crypto markets, high-profile tech investor Cathie Wood has turned heads again with claims that a single Bitcoin will be worth more than US$1m by 2030.

The world’s biggest cryptocurrency is currently trading in a range just above US$40,000.
 

ASX SMALL CAP WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for April 21 [intraday]:

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Gains were led by another intraday double-up in the small cap resources sector, after OzAurum Resources (ASX:OZM) flagged a massive gold hit.

After 74,000m of combined RC and AC drilling was completed in 2021, the company said it’s sitting on a “virgin gold discovery with a significant wide zone of primary gold mineralisation intersected at the Mulgabbie North Demag Zone”.

“High priority RC and diamond drilling of the Demag Zone will be undertaken as soon as drilling rigs become available,” the company said.

Elsewhere, agricultural stock Terragen Holdings (ASX:TGH) rose strongly after announcing test results for its Mylo feed supplement to reduce methane in dairy cows.

The company said the research indicates that “Mylo can reduce methane emissions by the equivalent of 100 tonnes of CO2 per 350-cow dairy farm per year”.

“More research at Ellinbank SmartFarm is planned to determine if higher doses of Mylo will reduce methane emissions further,” TGH said.
 

ASX SMALL CAP LOSERS

Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks for April 21 [intraday]:

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

Among the laggards was Aruma Resources (ASX:AAJ), which surged higher on Tuesday before going into a trading halt.

AAJ came out of the halt this morning with an update on the first-phase drilling program at its Mt Deans lithium project.

Aruma said results showed high-grade intersections “of up to 1.14% Li2O (lithium oxide) within a wide zone of lithium, all within a near-surface 25 metre thick, vertical body of solid pegmatite, from a depth of just 17 metres”.

Investors were unconvinced, sending the stock 30% lower in morning trade.