For the first time in over a month, the ASX finished a week higher than where it began — even with the bourse declining on an intraday basis.

The ASX 200 closed at 7,353 points which was 0.42% lower than yesterday, but up 1.6% from last Friday.

The best sector was utilities while the worst were energy and healthcare, which lost 1.46% and 1.94% respectively.

While investors had shrugged off fears of the omicron variant for much of this week, cases were first detected in Queensland and cases of all variants exceeded 500 in New South Wales for the first time in two months.

Elsewhere, Chinese property developer Evergrande was formally put into default by Fitch ratings just a few days after failing to make a repayment on time.

And Friday trade in Asia preceded the marquee data event of the week later tonight — US inflation figures for November.

“We expect the data will reinforce that underlying inflation in the US is both broad and high,” CBA strategist Kim Mundy said.

“Another strong CPI print could be the catalyst for markets to price a more aggressive Fed rate hike cycle and could further support the US dollar.”

TODAY’S BIGGEST SMALL CAP WINNERS

(Stocks highlighted in yellow rose after making announcements during the trading day).

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RV lessor Apollo Tourism (ASX:ATL) agreed to an acquisition from NZX listed Tourism Holdings (THL) (NZX:THL).

Apollo’s bosses told shareholders the combined group would be financially stronger with significant cost synergies and would capitalise in the global travel recovery. It is a share deal which will see THL list on the ASX and Apollo shareholders hold 25% of firm.

Grange Resources (ASX:GRR) climbed after telling shareholders it would pay another special dividend – this time 10 cents a share, taking its total yearly dividend to 14 cents a share.

TODAY’S BIGGEST SMALL CAP LOSERS

(Stocks highlighted in yellow rose after making announcements during the trading day).

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ANNOUNCEMENTS YOU MAY’VE MISSED

SCA Property Group (ASX:SCP) announced a $656m increase in the total value of its investment properties in just six months. $384 million of this came from valuation increases on its like for like properties with $293 million coming from acquisitions, while $20.6 million in assets were disposed of during the second half of the year.

Explorer Woomera Mining (ASX:WML) gave an exploration update on its Mt Venn JV with Cazaly Resources (ASX:CAZ) in WA. Woomera reported massive nickel and copper sulphides with holes including 2m at 0.24% nickel and 11m at 0.42% copper and 0.245 nickel.

VC fund Powerhouse Ventures (ASX:PVL) gave its second portfolio update in a week, announcing it was investing $250,000 in space services company SkyKraft. SkyKraft designs, manufactures and operates small satellites in low earth orbit constellations.

Fe (ASX:FEL), which has among the shortest company names on the ASX is changing its name to CuFe (ASX:CUF). The change comes as the company completes the purchase of a 60% interest in the Tennant Creek project in the Northern Territory.

Bapcor (ASX:BAP) completed the refinancing of its debt facility. It had three year facilities due to mature in July, but now has a $520 million facility in total with various expiry dates between July 2024 and July 2026.

AuMake (ASX:AUK), a company that has operated retail stores aimed at Chinese tourists, has re-opened five stores and has observed increased foot traffic. It comes as 150,000 international students begin to return to the country from next week.

 

TRADING HALTS

Monday

John Lyng Group (ASX:JLG) – capital raising
Ebos (ASX:EBO) – capital raising
Tennant Minerals (ASX:TMS) – capital raising
South Harz Potash (ASX:SHP) – capital raising
Great Southern Mining (ASX:GSN) – capital raising
Firefinch (ASX:FFX) – capital raising
Irongate (ASX:IAP) – capital raising
Roots (ASX:ROO) – capital raising
Vintage Energy (ASX:VEN) – capital raising

Tuesday

Pointerra (ASX:3DP) – contracts award
Minbos Resources (ASX:MNB) – capital raising
Centaurus Metals (ASX:CTM) – updated mineral resource
Adalta (ASX:1AD) – capital raising