The ASX 200 closed higher and small caps lower as investors sought for bargains amid the Wednesday resources wreck.

Overnight in New York, the Dow Jones closed 0.2% ahead as the US jobs market continued to display especial vigour.

The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite Index, that tech-laden home of FAANG et al, both ended 0.4% higher.

At home the miners and commodities companies rebounded.

Super strong resources exports in May – led by boatloads of coal – pushed the trade surplus to another record high coming in a shade below $16bn, so says the Bureau of Stats.

Market economists had pegged in a trade surplus of around $10.3bn. So we’re either doing some great exporting, or our economists are on average terrible, or both.

Meanwhile the Aussie dollar remains under pressure as money flies to the safety of the USD.

CBA’s head of agri-strategy Tobin Gorey noted the Aussie dollar again traded down near post-pandemic lows overnight but no further, saying the The ‘macro wane continues to favour the greenback.’

“The USD continued to rally against the other major agri-exporter’s currencies on Wednesday. And the greenback’s flex is an additional weight on US$ prices.”

At the close of trade on Thursday, the ASX 200 was 0.8% higher and the S&P/ASX Emerging Companies (XEC) Index was 0.25% lower.

 

TODAY’S BIGGEST SMALL CAP WINNERS

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

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Kyckr (ASX:KYK) has jumped well over 50% on Thursday,  after news RealWise has set its sights on acquiring  100% of the tech start-up shop Kycker at $0.08 a share.

Adavale Resources (ASX:ADD) says a ground-based gravity survey has wrapped up at its nickel projects in Tanzania with some 32 discrete gravity targets confirming a strike length of around 55kms.

“The measure of the success of this gravity program is quite simply a reflection of the large number of high-quality targets that have been generated,” so it’s pretty significant, adds executive director David Riekie.

 

TODAY’S BIGGEST SMALL CAP LOSERS

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

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On cue, Buy Now Pay Later stocks and porous payment fintechs continue to disappoint after a brief respite earlier this week.

Tyro Payments (ASX:TYR) was mauled by JP Morgan this morning after analysts lopped some 57% off the target share price and reckon life for TYR minus the outgoing (and soon to leave for Star Entertainment) CEO Rob Cooke is going to be a real squeeze.

In the same bucket: EML Payments (ASX:EML) has given back every penny of Wednesday’s circa 11% surge after scoring a big contract to make prepaid cards for the Spanish postal service.

RBC cut EML Payments from Outperform to Sector Perform (in line with everyone else in the sector over 12 months) but has held the target at $1.80.

Finally, UBS brokers took the sword to ZIP Co (ASX:ZIP) today as well.

 

STUFF YOU MAY’VE MISSED

The gold hits continue to unravel at pace for Strickland Metals (ASX:STK) with new results showing the upside at Milrose in terms of width and grade.

Key highlights from reverse circulation drilling include 5m at 11.5g/t gold from 68m, 65m at 4.4g/t gold from 95m inkling 3m at 20.2g/t gold and 3m at 33.5g/t gold.

Managing director Andrew Bray says the oxide results continue to surprise and equally exciting is that mineralisation is just beginning to show up with drilling intersecting the start of another potential zone in hole MRRC130.

Bray says an intersection of 8m at 4g/t gold from 104m was returned.

The Aussie finance platform Propell Holdings (ASX:PHL) is gunning for profitability in FY23 following the company’s latest round of funding.

The fast growing firms says it is currently undertaking a convertible note cap raise for $2.8m as it looks to take the business toward a maiden profit. This offer is being led by Reach Corporate.

The funds will be used as working capital and to further accelerate its lending book, which generated record volumes in the last quarter (Q4).

Melbourne’s very-own Toxic Avenger, DGL Group Limited (ASX:DGL), says it’s got a strategic acquisition underway, snatching up Adelaide-based Flexichem for $6.2 million, on a valuation of 4.6 x FY21 normalised EBITDA. Consideration is $4.65M in cash and $1.55M in DGL shares at a 5-day VWAP calculated at the date of completion. According to the company, the purchase “adds talent and IP on silicone-based manufacturing into DGL, and also opens up new export markets”.

CFOAM Limited (ASX:CFO) has cleared up speculation over its trading halt yesterday, revealing that it has entered into a conditional agreement for the sale of its 74.34% interest in CFOAM Corp to CONSOL Energy Inc. for a cool US$1,000,000. CFOAM had received a “Please Explain” from the ASX, but replied with an “All Good. Please see Rule 3.1A. Thank You”.

And lastly, Duxton Farms (ASX:DBF) has had LAWD Pty Ltd come over to say stuff like “LAWD, look at how shiny and awesome all your stuff is, Duxton!”. Maybe phrased a little differently, of course – but the end result is a 33% YoY increase in the value of Duxton’s total land, water and structural assets, which is now sitting at an impressive $143.5 million. 

 

TRADING HALTS

IPB Petroleum Limited (ASX:IPB) – Capital raising.

Pacific Nickel Mines Limited (ASX:PNM) – News brewing around its application for a Mining Lease in respect of the Kolosori Nickel Project in the Solomon Islands.

Firebrick Pharma Limited (ASX:FRE) – Announcement due about the outcome of the appeal filed against the TGA’s initial decision not to approve Nasodine® Nasal Spray (“Nasodine”) for sale in Australia.

Pilot Energy Limited (ASX:PGY) – Capital raising.

Kingwest Resources Limited (ASX:KWR) – “Significant” exploration results incoming!