• The ASX 200 fell 0.21% and the ASX XEC slips 1.05%
  • A 8 out of 11 sectors were lower led by Consumer Discretionary down 1.40%
  • Energy sector and stocks rally after Russia announces plans to slash oil production


The ASX 200 dropped 0.21% today and the ASX XEC was down 1.05%. A total of 8 out of 11 sectors lower, with Consumer Discretionary leading the laggards, declining 1.40%.

The Energy sector rallied by 1.78% with small caps like Helios Energy (ASX:HE8) up 6.06%, MMA Offshore (ASX:MRM) up 4% and Horizon Oil (ASX:HZN) up 3.13%. 

It’s likely thanks to Putin, with the Russian Government announcing on Friday that it would cut oil production in March by around half a million barrels a day – thats about 5% of its current output.

Brent crude prices rose to$US86.60/barrel (~2.5%) on the news, and were trading at $US85.66 today.



Shares in China ended lower last week as some investors reevaluated the Chinese economy’s rebound after Beijing scrapped its strict Covid-related restrictions. 

“While most [investors] agree that overall economic growth will recover in China this year, there appears to be a lack of conviction on the magnitude of that rebound,” SPI Asset Management managing partner Stephen Innes said in a note.

European stocks also fell, and while they had a good start to the year, “it looks time to hand back some of those gains as economic pessimism rises again,” IG analyst Chris Beauchamp said.

In the US last week, markets finished lower, digesting the Federal Reserve’s 0.25 percentage point increase and a surprisingly strong jobs report. 

With the fourth-quarter earnings season more than halfway through, fewer companies than normal are topping Wall Street profit expectations.

So far this earnings season, 58 companies have issued a negative profit outlook for the first quarter, according to FactSet. 

Just 13 have issued a forecast that topped analyst expectations. About 70% of S&P 500 companies have reported results.



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The small cap leader today was Metalicity (ASX:MCT) who scored permit EPM 28653, expanding the potential exploration area for copper/cobalt mineralisation at its Mt Surprise Project in North Queensland. 

Recent fieldwork at Mt Surprise has identified a copper trend with high grade rock chip samples of up to 11.65% copper and 66.39g/t silver, combined with anomalous cobalt mineralisation on assays of up to 650ppm.

“With assay results from over 300 ultrafine soil samples due shortly and the wet season coming to an end in the coming weeks, this is a very timely and exciting development,” MD Justin Barton said.

The company plans to focus initial fieldwork on the potential strike between recent fieldwork activities and historical copper recordings from the Geological Survey of Queensland along strike.

PNX Metals (ASX:PNX) has identified multiple high grade gold targets at its Burnside project in the NT, with rock chip sampling returning grades up to ~12g/t.

Multiple targets, with the potential to host economically significant gold mineralisation, have been identified and the plan is to delineate additional ‘standalone’ gold deposits that can be processed through the company’s proposed Fountain Head Plant.

“Away from the known deposits, historic mines and prospects, minimal exploration has taken place,” MD James Fox said.

“We look forward to drill testing these prospective ‘gold’ corridors early in 2023, after the NT wet season, and continuing to define other targets in our Pine Creek land package.” 

Argonaut Resources (ASX:ARE) is among the winners despite some issues in Zambia, where its Lumwana West copper-cobalt exploration licence was recently cancelled and then granted to another party within 30 days.

ARE is appealing and says at the time of the purported cancellation, the company’s 90% held subsidiary, Mwombezhi Resources, was operating in full compliance with all licence conditions and other regulatory requirements.

The company has previously had a bit of trouble in other countries too, In August, the South Australian Supreme Court revoked an Aboriginal Heritage Act authorisation over the Murdie copper project – putting a halt to exploration plans.

And ARE’s uranium IPO Orpheus Minerals was withdrawn in December due to lack of interest.

Reach Resources (ASX:RR1) has picked up four tenements prospective for lithium, rare earth element (REE) and manganese mineralisation in WA.

Notably, the lithium tenement Morrissey Hill project has widespread outcropping pegmatites, and is directly adjoining, and contains the same geology as, Red Dirt Metals’ (ASX: RDT) Yinnetharra Lithium Project. 



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Voluntary Administrators have been appointed at waste management stock M8 Sustainable (ASX:M8S), which was building a flagship $10.8m landfill facility in Gingin, WA.

The Administrators intend to “immediately explore options for the sale and/or recapitalisation of M8S”. Whilst in administration, the shares of the $5m capped minnow will remain suspended from trading.

M8S listed December 2019 after raising $19.5m at 20c per share.

VIP Gloves (ASX:VIP) will sell some Malaysian real estate for ~$5.6m and then immediately lease it back from the buyer. The lease payments for the first 3 years are set at ~$39,800 per month.

“The sale of land and buildings will provide a significant cash injection for the company, with funds used to eliminate financial borrowings and provide ongoing working capital,” it says.

VIP stopped making gloves in the December quarter “due to the average selling price of gloves continuing to decrease at a faster pace than the decrease in cost of production”. It is currently seeking new business activities.



Stelar Metals (ASX:SLB) – a potential acquisition

Legacy Minerals (ASX:LGM) – a material drilling result at the company’s Bauloora project

Zelira Therapeutics (ASX:ZLD) – an announcement around the HOPE clinical trial funding

Arrow Minerals (ASX:AMD) – capital raise

Thomson Resources (ASX:TMZ) – capital raise

Tennant Minerals (ASX:TMS) – capital raise

Hydrix (ASX:HYD) – announcement around the regulatory approval status of the AngelMed Guardian Device