Last week marked a serious wobble on global stock markets, as the Nasdaq slumped by 7.6% to move into official ‘correction’ territory — down ~14% from its recent all-time highs.

Following more sharp falls on Friday, the S&P500 has now fallen by around 8% from its recent all-time highs.

Has the post-COVID bubble gone ‘pop’?

Possibly… but investors who believe in metaphorical rays of light need look no further than the University of Lille in France, where physicists extended the life of a single bubble to an impressive 465 days.

Standard soap bubbles usually last only seconds before popping. But the scientists staved off the laws of gravity that usually drain bubbles of water by deploying the stabilising effects of the chemical compound glycerol.

On local markets, ASX investors were bracing for a storm after US tech stocks got smashed on Friday night.

So far though, stocks are in the red but fears of a Monday meltdown appear to have subsided.

The ASX 200 is off its intraday lows with a fall of around 0.5%, but the microcap Emerging Companies index hasn’t been spared with a fall of ~3.5%.

US stock futures have also been pushing higher in Monday Asian trade, with Nasdaq futures trading a short time ago at +0.8%.

Along with the now-entrenched fears about tighter financial liquidity and rising interest rates, geopolitical tensions are also lingering.

Reports emerged this morning that the US has ordered the families of diplomats to leave the Ukraine, amid the prospect of a possible Russian invasion.

Elsewhere in markets, gold stocks were out of favour with the precious metal holding above US$1,830/oz while Bitcoin has stabilised above US$36,000 following a sharp selloff over the weekend.


Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for January 24 [intraday]:

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Code Company Price % Market Cap
IEC Intra Energy Corp 0.021 50.0% $6,382,357
VMM Viridismining 0.3 50.0% $6,241,800
GGX Gas2Grid Limited 0.0025 25.0% $8,116,204
MLS Metals Australia 0.0025 25.0% $10,477,115
YPB YPB Group Ltd 0.0025 25.0% $12,235,667
GTE Great Western Exp. 0.155 19.2% $17,705,755
MHK Metalhawk. 0.325 18.2% $13,149,233
GSR Greenstone Resources 0.034 17.2% $23,405,282
MBK Metal Bank Ltd 0.007 16.7% $15,646,909
CAV Carnavale Resources 0.0185 15.6% $38,883,685
RFR Rafaella Resources 0.085 14.9% $14,114,939
ESR Estrella Res Ltd 0.039 14.7% $40,019,487
RXL Rox Resources 0.555 13.3% $77,227,731
CPM Coopermetalslimited 0.3 13.2% $7,160,300
AD1 AD1 Holdings Limited 0.026 13.0% $15,543,730
CYQ Cycliq Group Ltd 0.018 12.5% $5,560,267
EVE EVE Health Group Ltd 0.0045 12.5% $15,372,568
MCT Metalicity Limited 0.009 12.5% $20,003,419
TSC Twenty Seven Co. Ltd 0.0045 12.5% $10,643,256
99L 99 Loyalty Ltd. 0.037 12.1% $38,269,531
AFA ASF Group Limited 0.059 11.3% $42,012,373
DMM Dmcmininglimited 0.165 10.0% $4,080,000
UWL Uniti Group Ltd 4.13 9.5% $2,595,089,479
SMI Santana Minerals Ltd 0.295 9.3% $35,812,068
PRM Prominence Energy 0.012 9.1% $14,130,697
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Among stocks with news, ASX newcomer Virdis Mining (ASX:VMM) was a notable winner after reversing a run of lacklustre IPOs with a solid debut this morning.

The WA-based junior explorer raised $5.5m from investors at 20c per share and opened around 50% higher at 30c on its first day of trade.

Resources again dominated the winner’s list, although there were also some morning gains for $5.5m minnow Cycliq Group (ASX:CYQ) following the release of its December 4C filing.

The bike camera and equipment company reported positive operating cash flows of $1.12m, on cash receipts of $2.31m.

And internet connection platform Uniti Group (ASX:UWL) also rose strongly in the wake of sector consolidation rumours, after flagging that it’s received approaches from “multiple parties” with acquisition offers.

Shares in UWL climbed above $4 in morning trade, up ~1,900% from its 2019 listing price of 20c.

Gold is holding steady at US$1835.85.


Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks for January 24 [intraday]:

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Code Company Last % Market Cap
ARE Argonaut Resources 0.003 -50.0% $21,637,229
ANL Amani Gold Ltd 0.0015 -25.0% $45,751,128
BAS Bass Oil Ltd 0.0015 -25.0% $9,225,363
GTG Genetic Technologies 0.0045 -25.0% $55,403,791
PAB Patrys Limited 0.028 -24.3% $76,098,733
ADH Adairs Limited 3 -21.3% $651,090,351
NES Nelson Resources. 0.03 -21.1% $7,383,103
CLE Cyclone Metals 0.004 -20.0% $24,765,629
VMG VDM Group Limited 0.002 -20.0% $17,319,152
CGB Cann Global Limited 0.0025 -16.7% $19,006,460
SBR Sabre Resources 0.005 -16.7% $10,366,882
SIT Site Group Int Ltd 0.005 -16.7% $5,047,471
AUQ Alara Resources Ltd 0.026 -16.1% $21,868,306
SRH Saferoads Holdings 0.185 -15.9% $8,241,592
ESS Essential Metals Ltd 0.435 -15.5% $124,396,116
TLX Telix Pharmaceutical 6.89 -14.8% $2,306,239,826
EMT Emetals Limited 0.018 -14.3% $16,800,000
AHN Athena Resources 0.012 -14.3% $11,381,546
BIR BIR Financial Ltd 0.03 -14.3% $3,550,266
SHH Shree Minerals Ltd 0.012 -14.3% $14,885,316
SPN Sparc Tech Ltd 1.665 -14.2% $123,716,147
T3K Tek Ocean Group 0.28 -13.8% $10,638,713
TTT Titomic Limited 0.28 -13.8% $65,336,139
RRL Regis Resources 1.825 -13.1% $1,585,030,226
AUE Aurumresources 0.2 -13.0% $5,750,000
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Leading the laggards was Argonaut Resources (ASX:ARE), which fell sharply after being notified that the exploration licence for its Lumwana West copper-cobalt project had not been renewed by the Zambian Government on 28 December 2021 “as expected”.

The company said its Zambian lawyers discovered that key compliance documents weren’t provided as requested, which appears to have been grounds to cancel the licence.

But also “a new licence over the Lumwana West area was hurriedly and potentially corruptly granted to a recently registered company with no apparent financial or technical capacity”.

Argonaut said it’s now lodging an appeal against the granting of the new licence “on the grounds of fraud and impropriety”.