• Tech stocks surged on ASX today, offset by losses in Mining stocks
  • Gold and copper hit all-time highs
  • Ethereum on the rise on rumours of ETF approvals in the US

 

The ASX 200 closed around -0.15% lower on Tuesday, as gains in Tech stocks were offset by losses in Mining and Healthcare. 

 

Source: MarketIndex

 

On Wall Street overnight, Tech stocks got a boost as Nvidia received three price target upgrades from brokers ahead of its earnings report due on Wednesday (US time). This helped the Nasdaq hit a record close. 

Now read: Nvidia envy could drive The Street into The Wall this week

Gold and copper also hit their all-time high last night.

According to Jason Goepfert at Sundial Capital Research, when copper prices shoot up, other markets tend to follow suit, especially stocks.

“Copper prices breaking out to a record has been a good sign for further gains since 1959,” he told Bloomberg. 

On the ASX today, local traders parsed through the minutes of the RBA’s May 6-7 monetary policy meeting, which hinted at another rate hike as policymakers acknowledged the rising risks of inflation.

“A higher cash rate might be required, even with ongoing weakness in aggregate demand, if other factors slowed the pace of disinflation,” the minute read.

 

Stock movers at the large end of town

In the fat end of town, Telstra (ASX:TLS) was down almost -2% today after announcing that it was shaking things up to streamline its businesses, with 2,800 jobs to be cut.  

Telstra also reiterated its FY24 guidance and provided a FY25 Underlying EBITDA guidance of between $8.4 – $8.7 billion.

Building products group James Hardie (ASX:JHX) was the worst performing large cap, down over -10% after forecasting lower annual profits globally due to an uncertain market outlook. 

Lab testing company ALS (ASX:ALQ) was up +5% after reporting a bottom line profit that was in line with expectations. 

ALS’s full year NPAT came in at $12.9 million, a decrease of $278.3 million due mainly to impairments and restructuring provisions. 

Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) fell -0.75% despite reporting that its Onslow Iron project has shipped its first load of ore ahead of schedule to China Baowu Steel Group, the world’s largest steelmaker. 

Two MinRes transhippers are currently loading about 113,000 wet metric tonnes of iron ore onto a bulk carrier anchored 40 kilometers off the Port of Ashburton.

And The Star Entertainment Group (ASX:SGR) fell -7%, partially giving up yesterday’s 20% gains. 

Star surged yesterday after the company revealed that Florida-based Hard Rock International has approached it for a potential acquisition.  But in an embarrassing twist  this morning, Hard Rock denied any involvement with a proposal for Star. 

 

Ethereum ETF rumours

Asian shares took a breather on Tuesday after a seven-day winning streak. Chinese stocks in particular retreated as traders cashed in on some gains.

Over in Hong Kong, stocks dipped with Li Auto taking a hit of -20% after its Q1 electric vehicle sales didn’t quite meet expectations.

Mobile gamer Tencent also dropped, down -3% after hitting the pause button on Dungeon & Fighter Mobile just an hour after its launch in China due to some server hiccups. 

Meanwhile, the cryptocurrency market is back in hot territory. Over the past 24 hours, Bitcoin lifted by +5% while Ethereum surged by over +17%.

Ethereum jumped after Eric Balchunas, the respected analyst at Bloomberg, bumped up his odds of approval for the Ethereum exchange-traded fund (ETF) from 25% to 75%. 

He reckons the US Securities and Exchange Commission might be feeling some political pressure, especially since it wasn’t giving Bitcoin ETF applicants much attention before.

 

 

ASX SMALL CAP LEADERS

Today’s best performing small cap stocks:

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Sierra Nevada Gold (ASX:SNX) surged after declaring its intentions to follow up drill hole BHD006 which returned up to 1270g/t silver at Endowment mine, part of its Blackhawk epithermal project in Nevada, US. SNX has previously identified a large and high-grade intermediate sulphidation epithermal Ag-Au-Pb-Zn vein system, likely related to a large porphyry system located immediately to the south.

Flynn Gold (ASX:FG1) has sampled up to 64g/t gold at the Link Zone prospect, part of the Golden Ridge project in Northeast Tasmania. It’s talking high-grade assays here from its underground grab sampling of mineralised veins, including 64.4g/t, 37.6g/t and 15.9g/t gold. The Link Zone prospect is located between the company’s Trafalgar and Brilliant prospects, with all three  prospects now defining a corridor of high-grade gold mineralisation with a potential strike length of 2.5km and a vertical extent of at least 500m.

Bastion Minerals (ASX:BMO) says a recent mapping and sampling program uncovered “extensive new pegmatites and targets” at the Morrissey lithium project in WA.

Everest Metals (ASX:EMC) is hitting super grade gold up to 97g/t as part of a bulk sampling campaign at the Revere project in WA.

Western Australian focused explorer Golden Mile Resources (ASX:G88) announced the completion of Stage 3 metallurgical test work at its flagship Quicksilver nickel-cobalt project near Lake Grace, WA. That testing has outlined an initial “process beneficiation flowsheet”, which the company says has the potential to target 75% nickel recovery from the deposit.

Quicksilver is an oxide clay-hosted deposit with a resource of 26.3Mt grading 0.64% nickel and 0.04% cobalt along with valuable by-products gold, rare earths and scandium.

Previous metallurgical test work by the company had improved its understanding of the unique mineralisation and demonstrated the potential to develop a low energy, multi-product beneficiation process.

Gibb River Diamonds (ASX:GIB) announced it’s been granted three mining leases on the project’s land and these are licences considered key to developing the project further with a view to re-establishing its production. The Ellendale Project has, in the past, been one of the world’s largest diamond producers, with previous operators reporting a combined market capitalisation of over $690 million in 2006 on leases now held by GIB.

A day after bursting on up on the sighting of “widespread visible uranium” at its Morrissey project in WA, Bastion Minerals (ASX:BMO) is surging again. BMO hinted at this yesterday in its uranium-based announcement actually, but it brings it front and centre today. It’s also discovered extensive new lithium-bearing pegmatites towards the north end of the Central pegmatite target and potential new pegmatite corridors prospective for lithium have been confirmed. Two hot commods for the price of one at Morrissey – uranium and lithium.

Importantly, says Bastion, the field program discovered outcropping and subcropping pegmatites showing similar characteristics to other areas of the regional ‘Ti Tree’ shear zone where advanced lithium pegmatite projects are located.

Pioneer Lithium (ASX:PLN)  will commence a targeted exploratory drill campaign on major radiometric anomalies at their Verde Valor project in the rare earth-rich state of Bahia, Brazil. The initial 300m exploratory auger drilling campaign will focus on strategically selected location.

Kuniko (ASX:KNI) says a sampling campaign has commenced at Norway’s NGU national drill core archive, aiming to assay ~3,000m of unsampled historic drill core from 12 drill holes for the Ertelien Nickel-Copper-Cobalt Project. The current program aims to sample disseminated sulphide zones that were not previously been sampled.

And .. job candidates’ vetting company, Xref (ASX:XF1),  said its Board has decided to conduct a strategic review of its business following interest expressed by a number of parties regarding a potential acquisition of the company. The inquiries and discussions are still preliminary in nature and there is no certainty that a transaction will result from the strategic review. Xref’s long-term corporate adviser, TMT Partners, has been asked to advise on the management and evaluation of this potential acquisition interest.

 

ASX SMALL CAP LAGGARDS

Today’s best performing small cap stocks:

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IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

American West Metals’ (ASX:AW1) drilling campaign across geophysical targets at its 17.5Mt Storm copper project has highlighted the potential for rapid resource expansion after intersecting new zones of copper mineralisation.

Soft tissue repair company Aroa Biosurgery’s (ASX:ARX) FY24 results are in line with guidance with total revenue up 12% yoy to NZ $69.1m and its Myriad family of products continuing to be a key focus.

Everest Metals Corporation’s (ASX:EMC) initial drill and blast work for bulk sampling has returned bonanza grade assays of up to 1m at 97g/t gold that provide further support for the existence of a large-scale orogenic gold system at its Revere project in WA.

Golden Mile Resources (ASX:G88) has completed Stage 3 metallurgical test work that outlines an initial process beneficiation flowsheet with the potential to target 75% nickel recovery from its flagship Quicksilver nickel-cobalt project near Lake Grace, WA.

Haranga Resources’ (ASX:HAR) auger drilling has hit high uranium concentrations in the northernmost part of the Sanela prospect within its Saraya permit in Senegal.

Hot Chili (ASX:HCH) has closed its share purchase plan to raise up to $5m early due to overwhelming support from eligible shareholders. The company will apply scale-back conditions accordingly in accordance with the offer documents for the SPP, which was fully underwritten. Along with the earlier $24.9m placement, proceeds will provide up to 18 months funding for the completion of the Costa Fuego pre-feasibility study, completion of the water supply business case study, completion of the Costa Fuego environmental impact assessment, ongoing exploration, drilling and consolidation activities.

Pure Hydrogen (ASX:PH2) has progressed another facet of its hydrogen strategy with its investee company Turquoise Group successfully producing hydrogen and graphene powder from its commercial demonstration plant in Queensland.

Drilling at Spartan Resources (ASX:SPR) high-grade Pepper prospect has returned significant new intercepts including 14.73m at 11.42g/t gold from 553.73m down-hole ahead of a mid-year resource update for its revitalised Dalgaranga gold project in WA.

RareX (ASX:REE) is in a trading halt ahead of announcing a niobium acquisition and capital raising.

Altech Batteries (ASX: ATC) has raised $3.7mn via share purchase plan (SPP) of 57,246,037 shares at $0.065 per share and 28,622,799 free-attaching options with an exercise price of $0.08 per share. Funds will be used to progress the company’s CERENERGY battery project as well as its Silumina Anodes pilot plant. “With the positive definitive feasibility study and excellent economics for the 120MWh CERENERGY battery project having been recently released in March 2024, Altech is also focused on securing offtake as well as finance to commence plant construction,” ATC managing director and CEO Iggy Tan says.

Renegade Exploration (ASX:RNX) has started diamond drilling to test the large Mongoose Deeps magnetic gravity anomaly at the Cloncurry project in QLD. The Mongoose Deeps magnetic anomaly is a highly attractive target beneath the Mongoose copper deposit, which is similar in size, shape and magnitude as the world-class Ernest Henry copper mine. RNX says the drilling program will take six to eight weeks, with additional assaying time expected.

 

TRADING HALTS

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At Stockhead we tell it like it is. While Altech Batteries, Renegade Exploration, American West Metals, Aroa Biosurgery, Everest Metals Corporation, Golden Mile Resources, Haranga Resources, Hot Chili, Pure Hydrogen, Spartan Resources and RareX are Stockhead advertisers, they did not sponsor this article.