• The S&P ASX 200 index closed 0.37% on Friday, while the S&P ASX Emerging Companies index was also up
  • Value of refinanced mortgages hits a new peak as Aussie households look to relieve rate hike pain
  • Codrus hits 12m grading 2,680ppm TREO in maiden drill hole at Karloning REE-niobium project


After getting off to a bumpy start this morning the S&P ASX 200 index closed up 0.37% after falling 1.9% in the past three days and as much as 3% from Monday’s high of 7368 points.

The S&P ASX Emerging Companies index (XEC) – a benchmark for Australia’s micro-cap companies – rose 0.20%.

It has been a tumultuous week on the ASX following the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) hiking rates for the 11th time in 12 months at its May meeting on Tuesday to curb sticky inflation, sending the bourse on a downward trajectory.

But after a few days of jitters investors seem to be a bit more optimistic come Friday.

Eight of the 11 ASX sectors were in the green today. Leading the gainers was real estate, which rose 2.01%, followed by materials up 0.56% and  utilities, gaining 0.52%.   Number one on the laggards board was tech stocks, which have had a good run of late but fell 0.31% today.  Consumer discretionary fell 0.22%, while communication services dropped 0.20%.

On Twitter @Stockrocker_ASX thought the market was looking pretty good indeed.



The value of refinanced mortgages in Australia has reached a new peak as households strive to steer clear of increasing interest rates.

According to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, loans worth $21.2 billion were refinanced in March, surpassing the previous February high by $1.3 billion.

The value of external refinancing for owner-occupier housing rose 3.9% to $14.2 billion and was 29.1% higher compared to a year ago. For investor housing refinancing rose 12.3% to $7 billion and was 27.3% higher compared to a year ago.

The value of new loan commitments in March 2023, as measured by seasonally adjusted terms, demonstrated the following trends:

For total housing, there was a 4.9% increase to $24 billion, following a 1% decline in February. Despite being the first upturn since January 2022, it remained 26.3% lower than the previous year.

For owner-occupier housing, there was a 5.5% increase to $16 billion, but this represented a 24.8% drop compared to the same time last year.

For investor housing, there was a 3.7% increase to $8 billion, yet this marked a 29.2% decrease compared to a year ago.



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Codrus Minerals (ASX:CDR) is finishing the week on a high announcing it had discovered clay rare earths, reporting 12m grading 2,680ppm (0.268%) TREO in the top 40m of a maiden drill hole at the Karloning REE-niobium project in WA.

The find includes a 4m chunk at 4,764ppm (0.476%). There are now two styles of REE mineralisation confirmed within the project area including hard rock pegmatite mineralisation and clay hosted.

“This is a very exciting result from our first-ever drill hole at Karloning, confirming the presence of shallow clay-hosted rare earths mineralisation in addition to the hard rock hosted REE mineralisation that the project was originally acquired for,” CDR MD Shannon Bamforth said.

Gas explorer and producer Armour Energy (ASX:AJQ) was also up today after also reassuring investors that release of the Federal Government Consultation Paper on the Mandatory Code for East Coast Gas Market combined with the Northern Territory Government decision to open the door for Unconventional gas development projects, will provide more certainty for the company and industry.

“While there is still a level of uncertainty around the application of the draft code, the proposed small producer exemptions, which should apply to Armour, are a positive step in the right direction,” CEO Christian Lange said.

“Armour has contracted 5 TJ/day of gas to Shell Australia from December 1st, 2023 at $12/GJ and materially higher for 12-months beginning January 1st, 2024, importantly.

“This is significantly higher than current contract and will therefore improve financial performance and underpin our growth ambitions.”

The Northern Territory Government’s has agreed to the implementation of all 135 recommendations under the 2018 Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing.

AJQ holds 100% interest in an extensive exploration acreage position in the McArthur Basin of the NT where comparable shale gas potential to the neighbouring Beetaloo Basin has been identified and multi-TCF shale gas prospective resources booked by the company.

“For a company that strives for best practice and sustainable interaction with all our stakeholders, Armour Energy is pleased to see the pathway to commercialisation of unconventional resources progress in the right direction.”



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There’s a bit of news floating around on the ASX on a Friday afternoon.

Tamboran Resources (ASX:TBN)  also welcomed the Northern Territory Government’s implementation of all recommendations under the inquiry into hydraulic fracturing, saying it provides the company with confidence to progress its investment in the Beetaloo Basin.

Northern Territory Deputy Chief Minister and Minister for Mining and Industry Nicole Manison and TBN managing director Joel Riddle hosted a media event in Darwin to welcome the arrival of the Helmerich & Payne (H&P)  Flex 3 rig in Australia today.

“This gives industry the certainty to import and invest in the latest shale technology and equipment, including H&P FlexRig ” TBN MD and CEO Joel Riddle said.

“With the Northern Territory Government’s completion of the Pepper Inquiry, Tamboran is planning on moving rapidly towards production as early as 2025.”

Meanwhile, its last drinks for Kaddy (ASX:KDY) – or at least for now – with the online marketplace connecting Aussie drinks producers with retailers and venues entering voluntary administration.

Rajiv Goyal, Chris Johnson, and Joseph Hayes of Wexted Advisors have been appointed as voluntary administrators of KDY according to an ASX announcement.

“The administrators are undertaking an urgent assessment of Kaddy Group and will be looking to sell the business as a going concern or recapitalisation via a Deed of Company Arrangement (DOCA),” the announcement said.

The announcement said administrators intend to work with management, employees, suppliers and customers to stabilise operations and seek the best outcome for the business.

A first statutory meetings of creditors is expected to take place on Tuesday, May 16, 2023.

And BNPL play Splitit Payments (ASX:SPT) has inked a new two-year partnership agreement with Visa to optimise consumer experience for Visa Instalments embedded in the Splitit solution.

Under the deal, merchants can gain access to a Buy Now Pay Later payment option. The pilot will be launched by SPT and Visa in the second half of 2023.



Venture Minerals (ASX:VMS) – Pending new project acquisition

Terra Uranium (ASX:T92) – Capital raise

Nutritional Growth Solutions (ASX:NGS) – Also a capital raise

Marvel Gold (ASX:MVL) – Another capital raise

Hammer Metals (ASX:HMX) – Pending updated mineral resource estimate

Besra Gold (ASX:BEZ) – Pending announcement on draw down facility of up to US $300 million