On light volumes, even for Friday in the Stockhead newsroom, the ASX 200 index (XJO) and the ASX emerging companies index (XEC) have traded both sides of the coin on Friday, the ASX200 has closed  1.0% lower, the XEC o.9% higher.

The major banks are doing well. That always frightens me a little.

The hopes, thin though they were, that we might have an early end to this carnage between Ukraine and Russia all but collapsed overnight – higher level ‘peace talks’ – between the two failed to deliver any significant progress, suggesting war will be prolonged, leaving decision makers in turmoil.

That, along with biting US consumer inflation – up 7.9% year-on-year – but sans the impact of the Russian invasion, left local equities exposed to some choppy trade, even if our commodity-strong indices hold us in good stead compared to regional markets which have been hit with a stick.

The Nikkei 225 index and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong are both trading between 2 – 3% lower.

TODAY’S BIGGEST SMALL CAP WINNERS

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

Scroll or swipe to reveal table. Click headings to sort.

Today’s Charlie Sheen penny stock is Admiralty Resources (ASX:ADY), up 25% and as the Eagles said, live in Santa Monica:

 

 

In February last year – that’s like 25 years ago – the iron ore hopeful signed a deal to get things up and going at its Mariposa project in Chile.

Stockhead’s Emma Davies is all over that and the role Chinese company Hainan has over Mariposa.

Meanwhile on Thursday, as the Aussie PM declared he wants a much bigger army, Xtek Ltd (ASX:XTE) secured a new department of defence contract for its ‘Wasp’ Small Unmanned Aerial Systems (SUAS) system.  The stock rose 13% yesterday and it’s 9% higher today.

 

TODAY’S BIGGEST SMALL CAP LOSERS

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

Scroll or swipe to reveal table. Click headings to sort.

PSC Insurance Group (ASX:PSI) down about 5% on Friday, says it’s got a big bag of binding commitments for an $80m capital raising via a placement of 17,777,778 fully paid ordinary shares for only selected institutional and sophisticated investors at $4.50 per share, a 5.3% discount to the Wednesday closing price.

I do like these casually confident few lines from the ASX release:

“The funds will be used over time to assist with the funding of acquisitions in accordance with our growth strategy. We anticipate that funds will be deployed in a similar manner to the funds raised in November 2020.”

That means look out struggling insurance minnows – since January 2021, PSI has nailed 12 acquisitions for an ‘aggregate base purchase price’ of $119m.

And let’s go again: Advanced Human Imaging (ASX:AHI) a WA-based med-tech which specialises in images of advanced humans (actually, they have a pretty cool smartphone-based scanner for your fitness levels and such) jumped out of the Thursday blocks – gaining over 37% by lunchtime following a sell down from a major US institutional stakeholder.

It’s down 20%, as physics comes knocking on the bourse.

ANNOUNCEMENTS YOU COULD’VE MISSED

Globe Metals & Mining (ASX:GBE) director Bob Tan has agreed to provide a six-month loan of $1 million for working capital at a rate of 8% p.a with a default of 20% p.a. GBE has said its ‘Kanyika’ project in Malawi will be the first niobium mine in 50 years when it comes online with ~90% of the mineral used to manufacture high strength alloy steels.

Tennant Minerals (ASX:TMS) has started trading on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange under ticker code UH&A. The company said it had received requests from European investors to dual list on a bourse in the region. The company, which focuses on cobalt, lithium and zinc projects across a broad range, said it intends to broaden its shareholder base, access new markets and increase general liquidity.

And, Mallee Resources (ASX:MYL) is a step closer to acquiring the Avebury Nickel Sulphide Project in western Tasmania after executing a deed of company (DOCA) arrangement with Hartee Metals. Under the arrangement Mallee can buy Allegiance Mining, which owns the Avebury Project for $85.9m through cash and shares.

Managing Director John Lamb, who was a former general manager of Avebrury, said there had rarely been a better time to acquire a nickel sulphide project.

TRADING HALTS

Australian Pacific Coal (ASX:AQC) – entered a trading halt, pending capital raise.

Comms Group (ASX:CCG) – entered a trading halt, pending the release of a global agreement.

Cauldron Energy (ASX:CXU) – entered a trading halt, pending a capital raise.