• ASX 200 ends lower on Monday 
  • IT and Consumer Discretionary only sectors to end higher
  • Rex Minerals added 52% on takeover


Despite a more than handy lead out of Wall Street, the ASX started badly on Monday morning, yet somehow just kept the awfulness coming.

The S&P/ASX200 closed down 59 points, or 0.76%, to 7,763.20… sliding lower and lower until the final bell ended a long day of trading misery.

Via Google


That’s a bad chart, but this one is better bad.

This is an ASX chart which – being in the shape of a slippery slide – captures the momentum of the day quite nicely.

It says: bad. Via ASX

The benchmark fell away at the open on Monday, weighed down by iron ore prices which have softened ahead of this month’s Third Plenum due to roll out in Beijing, although the general feeling is we won’t be seeing much love on the infrastructure stimulus front – which in turn means no love for iron ore demand.

Local stocks just haven’t found their footing, dragged down by broad-based losses and underperforming resources companies.

First on the chopping block as seems de rigeur of late – ASX lithium names – the outlook for the battery metals world just not getting any better.

Worst of a bad bunch were Arcadium Lithium (ASX:LTM), Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) and IGO (ASX:IGO).

The epic ASX iron ore trio of BHP (ASX:BHP) , Fortescue (ASX:FMG) and Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) were all significantly lower by the late afternoon trade.

The steel-making ingredient was stomped in both Dalian and Singapore over the weekend, losing as much as 3.2% in futures trading.

On the energy front there’s bleeding as well.

Woodside Energy Group (ASX:WDS) was down 1.8% and Santos (ASX:STO) cut by 2.1% after Brent crude oil prices fell about 2 per cent from recent two-month highs of around $US88/bbl.

Despite the handsome Friday session for a lead in out of Wall Street, nine of the 11 local sectors ended in the red, with only IT and Consumer Discretionary in positive territory.

ASX200 by the sectors on Monday

Via MarketIndex

The materials and mining companies continue to come under pressure after an ordinary run during the last quarter.

UBS expects Aussie mining and energy companies and the broader resources sector to “remain divergent” after a June quarter which saw iron ore lead the portfolio of metals lower.

Iron ore has dropped by almost 25% over the last three months.

These have not been offset by gains for silver, copper and gold – which have risen between 10 and 15%.

Meanwhile, the ASX Small Ordinaries (XSO) index and the ASX Emerging Companies (XEC) index were both lower at the bell.

asx week ahead

On the macro front, it’s going to be a fairly quiet week ahead of us. The Americans have June consumer inflation (CPI and PPI) data this week.

On Monday, the Australian Bureau of Statistics says the total book value of new housing loans fell 1.7% in May to $28.8bn.

The value of new investor loans fell 1.3% in May to $10.7bn. Owner-occupier loans (excl. first home buyers) fell 1.6 per cent to $12.9bn, while first home buyer loans fell 2.9 per cent to $5.2bn.

The Aussie dollar is kicking ahead, taking off where it left things last week after passing a 6-month high. On Monday the pacific peso slid past $0.6750, on the back of building expectations that the sleepy Reserve Bank could fall behind in the global rate-cutting cycle.

Or even worse – the RBA might raise rates again following the strong inflation data for May.

Markets are currently priced for a just-under even chance that the RBA will hike rates at its next meeting in August.

Not the ASX

After lunch in Hong Kong, the Hang Seng is down -1.78%.

The FTSE 100 last closed down -0.45%.

A Goldilocksian June US jobs read on Friday meant Wall Street was allowed to enjoy the weekend at a bunch of unreasonably upbeat fresh record highs.

For the week that was, the S&P500 found almost 2%, while the Dow climbed 0.7%.

The Nasdaq added a further 3.5%.

Late last week it was wins for Apple (7.5%), Meta (7.1%), Advanced Micro Devices (6%), Amazon (3.5%) and Broadcom (6.1%).

Those growth stocks pumped after the US jobs data suggested a slowing economy etc.

That said, even Tesla (TSLA) added 27% last week.

US Q2 Earnings are upon us, outrageously.

These will kick off in earnest when the big US banks get into it on Friday in New York.

JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup and Wells Fargo will begin the party.

US Futures at 4pm on Monday in Sydney

Via Fox



Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks:

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Story of the day goes to Rex Minerals (ASX:RXM) which is as far from the regional plane company as a stock is likely to get on a Monday arvo.

RXM has entered a scheme implementation deed that will see MACH Metals Australia buy the entire company for $0.47 per Rex share – which is a huge premium of 79% to Rex’s 30-day VWAP2 and 98% to the 90-day VWAP, valuing the company at $393 million.

Gold Mountain (ASX:GMN)  was also moving quickly on Monday, on news that the company has received assays from regional stream sediment sampling with widespread anomalies that cover a total area of approximately 80km2, signallingpotential for ultra-high grade hard rock monazite hosted REE-Nb-U-Sc mineralisation at its Down Under project.

Robotic technology company FBR (ASX:FBR) says its first next-generation Hadrian X construction robot has arrived in the United States, where it will be transported to a facility in Fort Myers, Florida to undergo testing.

And Bastion Minerals (ASX:BMO) jumped on soil sampling which defined elevated lithium to 120 ppm north of the post–tectonic granite (Agl) identified in government mapping, along with elevated tantalum (to 18 ppm), rubidium (to 234 ppm), tin (to 13 ppm) and cerium (to 115 ppm) occur in the south of the soil grid, at its 100% owned Split Rock Dam project in WA.

Encounter Resources (ASX:ENR) has fresh assays from 200m east of other recently reported results have returned additional shallow, high-grade niobium-REE mineralisation including:

  • 46m at 3.1% Nb2O5 from 60m to EOH including 4m at 6.4% Nb2O5 from 84m; and,
  • 18m at 3.2% Nb2O5 from 76m including 2m at 17.0% Nb2O5 from 76m.



Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks:

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

Wordpress Table Plugin



Brazilian Critical Minerals (ASX:BCM) has started an aggressive multi-pronged exploration campaign at its Ema rare earths project in Brazil that will include a major infill auger drilling program to upgrade the high-grade portion of the existing resource from the inferred category to the higher confidence indicated category.

Brightstar Resources’ (ASX:BTR) drilling has intersected high-grade gold of up to 45.76g/t gold at the Pericles and Stirling deposits within its Menzies project, raising the likelihood of an upgrade in resource classification. The drilling has also indicated that mineralisation at these deposits remains open at depth.

Hot Chili (ASX:HCH) has formed a joint venture with Chilean iron ore company Compania Minera del Pacifico to develop a multi-user seawater and desalinated water supply network that will secure supplies for its Costa Fuego copper-gold project.

Recharge Metals (ASX:REC) is carrying out technical analysis of historical data to steer low-cost exploration at its Brandy Hill South copper-gold project in WA’s Mid West region. The project has the potential to host higher grade porphyry-style copper mineralisation.

Red Metal’s (ASX:RDM) impurity removal trial has successfully produced a potentially saleable mixed rare earths concentrate with 48.7% total rare earth oxides with valuable magnet REOs making up 39.5% of the TREO content using ore from its Sybella discovery in northwest Queensland.

White Cliff Minerals (ASX:WCN) has locked in up to an additional 63km2 of highly prospective licences covering newly available ground at the Nunavut copper project in Canada. These licences cover several significant areas of anomalous copper-silver-gold.

At Stockhead, we tell it like it is. While Brazilian Critical Minerals, Brightstar Resources, Hot Chili, Recharge Metals, Red Metal and White Cliff Minerals are Stockhead advertisers, they did not sponsor this article.



Mayfield Childcare (ASX:MFD) ) – pending the release of an announcement regarding an acquisition.

Suvo Strategic Minerals (ASX:SUV) – pending an announcement relating to a binding agreement for its geopolymer concrete.

Redcastle Resources (ASX:RC1) – pending an announcement in relation to its diamond drilling campaign at Queen Alexandra.

Hastings Technology Metals (ASX:HAS) ) – pending an announcement to the market concerning a share placement.

Infini Resources (ASX:I88) – pending an announcement regarding material exploration results at its Portland Creek Uranium Project.

Summit Minerals (ASX:SUM) – ending an announcement by Summit in relation to a capital raise.