• ASX tracking well to end the week on a mellow big green high
  • Energy and Materials claw back this week’s sadface-inducing losses
  • Battery metals firmly back on the shopping list with TNG leading the charge

It’s been happier times for Australian markets, as a cranking recovery by Materials, Energy and Utilities made up for poor performances earlier this week, pushing the ASX to finish up around 0.5% for the day.

While not enormous, the gain was enough to get the ASX on track for its best week since March, a positive sign in amongst all the talk of bear markets. Christian’s got the week that was covered here in his usual entertaining fashion.

In general terms, there’s been seemingly endless amounts of chatter around as many sectors as you’d wish to train your peepers on. Lucky for you, we’re already on the case.

The radiant Jess Cummins has wrapped up what’s happened to uranium in the EU, the positively orbital Emma Davies has brought glad tidings on dealing with space trash, and Eddy Sunarto has the good oil on a potential breakthrough using cannabis to help kids on the spectrum.

To actual stock stuff, and the big winner today was undoubtedly TNG (ASX:TNG), which flew like balls from a cannon on news that the federal government had decided to spot it $300m in debt funding for its flagship Mount Peake Vanadium Titanium Iron Project in the Northern Territory.

It’s a massive shot in the arm for TNG, which went bigger than big over the course of the day, up more than 37% and leaving everyone holding it grinning like bull sharks at a crowded shallow beach.

Up the pointy end of town, and Liontown Resources’ (ASX:LTR) (+7.8%), Paladin Energy (ASX:PDN) )+5.9%) and Latitude (ASX:LFS) (+5.2%) all put in decent numbers early, before being overtaken by an army of small caps that overtook them in terms of percentage gains.

On the unhappy side of the story, and possible investor concerns about Waistline Inflation saw the market tipping out of the junk food sector, with Domino’s (ASX:DMP) and Collins Foods (ASX:CKF) down significantly in the morning.

Investors had the pair sliding like fry cooks on greasy kitchen tiles, down 2.6% and 3.3% respectively for the morning. However, a flurry of lunch orders lifted Domino’s to a thin’n’crispy gain. No such luck for Collins, still down about 3.0% as the Taco Bell rang this afternoon.

In among the little leaguers, and recent interest in Conico (ASX:CNJ) continued with a high volume changing hands to push its price up 37.5%, and  lithium digger Charger Metals (ASX:CHR) was on track for an excellent week’s return, up more than 26.3% for the morning and storming towards a 39% gain since Friday last.

Meanwhile, Tempest Minerals (ASX:TEM) fell sharply as the market thumbed its nose at downhole electromagnetic survey results from the Orion target at its Meleya Project in WA, down by more than 36% by lunchtime.

Overseas, and the shooting of former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe sadly knocked the wind out of the Nikkei’s sails. At the time of writing, Abe’s precise condition was unknown, however early reports indicated that things were looking grim for the 67-year-old.

 

ASX SMALL CAP WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for July 8 [intraday]:

Swipe or scroll to reveal full table. Click headings to sort:

 

ASX SMALL CAP LOSERS

Here are the least-best performing ASX small cap stocks for July 8 [intraday]:

Swipe or scroll to reveal full table. Click headings to sort:

 

WHAT YOU MAY’VE MISSED

Here’s a crazy development in the fight for Altamin (ASX:AZI). VBS Exchange has given notice that it’s changing its takeover bid for all of the ordinary shares (there are no ordinary shares in this Italian cracker) in Altamin – but not in terms of price – just in terms of time.

VBS is extending the offer which will now remain open until 7.00pm (Sydney time) on 1 August 2022, instead of a few weeks earlier on 18 July 2022. The move looks like an attempt to put the pressure back on the Altamin board which recently delivered the major shareholder one of the more comprehensive takedowns of an unsolicited takeover bid we’ve enjoyed reading this year.

After VBS offered 9.5 cents per AZI share for full control of the base and battery metals explorer –  valuing Altamin at $37.2 million – the board got independent expert BDO on the horn to come in and do a thorough stocktake… and that didn’t turn out so great for VBS. Watch this space…

Meanwhile Newmark Property (ASX:NPR) says it popped down to the shops and, in a bold move that will no doubt upset the missus, has bought the shops. NPR says the $57m purpose-built 2.8ha Large Format Retail space in the Brisbane suburb of Underwood comes with several existing tenants including Officeworks, Supercheap Auto and the somewhat-displaced Sydney Tools. It’s right next to Bunnings, too, leaving plenty of opportunities to grab a scorched sausage on stale Tip-Top every Saturday.

And rounding out the week’s last-minute news is a statement from Locality Planning Energy Holdings (ASX:LPE), which has fired off a “WTF R U On About, M8?” to the Australian Financial Review over an article published July 7, asserting LPE is in hot water with regulators.

LPE says there is “no investigation into the Company that it has been notified of by any regulatory agency” – and as such the company stands to be on the receiving end of either an apology from The Fin, or a bloody rude shock from the ACCC.

 

TRADING HALTS

Galileo Mining (ASX:GAL) – material drill assay results from the company’s Callisto discovery are pending. It’s like Christmas in July, except every present’s a spreadsheet.

Power Minerals (ASX:PNN) – We understand that there’s a memorandum of understanding in the pipeline.

Minbos Resources (ASX:MNB) – announcement pending regarding a material equity raising (including a significant cornerstone investment) and strategic cooperation agreement.

Auric Mining (ASX:AWJ) – Stand by for an announcement about results from a recent scoping study.