From the usually unnervingly quiet world of chess comes this violent tale of woe, after a chess-playing robot reportedly snapped the finger of a 7-year-old boy during a chess tournament in Russia.

According to a report in The Guardian, the child was playing against the robot and was in the middle of making a move when the robot pincers latched onto the boy’s finger, refused to let go and eventually broke the poor boy’s bone.

It’s a bold new entry into the annals of chess strategy, which we’ve decided should be called the “Kasparov Snap”, in honour of the former chess world champion.

Kasparov famously shocked the world of chess by muttering a clearly audible “Дерьмо” while being absolutely pantsed by Google’s Deep Blue supercomputer in 1997, which – until now – was the most violent outburst chess had ever seen.

“The robot broke the child’s finger,” said Sergey Lazarev, president of the Moscow Chess Federation and vice president of the Glorious Soviet Ministry of Stating the Bleeding Obvious.

Footage of the violent outburst has appeared on social media, so we can all enjoy the spectacle of watching a little kid be egregiously assaulted by a machine. (Don’t worry – it’s not gory)

It’s a worrying sign that a robot would assault a child – even more so because it’s a chess robot, so it’s obviously going to be smarter than your average robot, because chess is hard.

The child has apparently been treated for his injuries and a full enquiry is underway to determine precisely what happened.

The future for the robot is most likely looking pretty grim. Russian authorities are pretty fierce when it comes to protecting children (Russian ones – not any of the others, though).

Anyway – let’s take a look at the markets to see who else is making some moves today.

 

TO MARKETS

The ASX is being a total bore this morning, dipping slightly before heading into lunch time flat. How very, very dull.

There’s been some movement at sector levels this morning, though – gains from Utilities (+1.04%) and, get this, Materials!! (+0.95%) were offset by drops from InfoTech (-1.38%), Health Care (-1.07%) and Energy (-0.78%).

It would be so nice if they could all figure out how to play nicely together.

Big Time winners this morning were… no one. It’s the Small Caps doing all the heavy lifting to keep the market barely moving at all, and we’ll get to them in a bit.

There are some Big Losers today, though – Dicker Data (ASX:DDR) has been rogered to the tune of -6.7%, on the back of a quarterly report that the market considered unpleasant.

Similarly, a decent activity report from Nanosonics (ASX:NAN) (-8.1%) has been roundly rejected by investors, and PolyNovo (ASX:PNV), which enjoyed a huge rush of support late last week, has handed back an 8.0% chunk of those gains, now that the market’s seen the company’s quarterlies.

And SportsBet (ASX:PBH) is down 6.38%. What were the odds on that?

 

NOT THE ASX

Overseas, and Wall Street’s Friday Follies continued to drive soft sentiment globally, with all three major US stock market indices finishing lower – the S&P 500 by 0.83%, the Dow by 0.43% and tech heavy Nasdaq by 1.87%.

Eagle-eyed Eddy says that it’s all social media’s fault, after Snap Inc fell by 39% after posting a US$422 million loss for Q2. Meta also fell 7.5% as social media stocks saw more than US$130 billion wiped off their market cap.

US 10-year Treasury yield fell by 15bp to 2.75%, its lowest in two months as traders put their bets ahead of Tuesday’s (US time) Fed rate hike decision.

To Asian markets, where things are looking a little bit sad and sorry. Japan’s Nikkei is down 0.73%, Hong Kong has slumped 0.75% and Shanghai shares shambled a shameful 0.3%.

To commodities, and it’s more sad news. Energy is mixed, with oil prices down 1.1% and natural gas up 1.6%, while precious metals lost some of their lustre, with gold (0.15%), silver (-0.63%) and copper (-0.42%) all falling.

 

ASX SMALL CAP WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for July 22 [intraday]:

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Among the small caps, and among the most notable was Genex Power (ASX:GNX), which has gone soaring by 49% after it announced it’s received a conditional, non-binding, indicative proposal from Skip Essential Infrastructure Fund to buy the whole shebang.

Meawbhile Odyssey Gold Odyssey Gold (ASX:ODY) has had a belter this morning on news of a major find at its Maybelle Deposit in WA, including a 4m @ 53.9g/t Au from 124m (~3.5m true width) result, which has excited investors and driven up the price by 37.5%.

And record revenues for MoneyMe (ASX:MME have finally given the retail finance sector something to smile about.

Gross revenue of >$55m, up >190% on pcp, contracted revenue of $398m, up 306% on pcp and gross customer receivables at a juicy $1.4b, up 366% on pcp had investors climbing into the cab with MoneyMe for a ride back to their place, with a 26.4% increase safely in their handbag.

Lying on the couch in the Loser’s Lounge this morning are Mayfield Group Mayfield Group (ASX:MFD) (-22.2%), after it issued a break-even-at-best profit warning that saw investors grabbing their coats and skipping town.

EML Payments EML Payments (ASX:EML) has slumped after the Bank of Ireland identified a number of new shortcomings in remediation work the company already had underway at the insistence of of BoI. It’s down 21.7%.

 

ASX SMALL CAP LOSERS

Here are the least-greatest performing ASX small cap stocks for July 22 [intraday]:

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