• Benchmark up circa 1%, small caps surge 1.5%
  • Coal miners eclipsed by Whitehaven record profits
  • Kincora Copper finds so much more copper

The small cap S&P/ASX Emerging Companies (XEC) index and the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 (XJO) index are putting on a stout show to begin the week, with energy stocks led by Whitehaven’s obscene $3 billion profit even eclipsing the strong leads out of a rallying Wall Street.

The gains come as petrol prices finally make a decent retreat at home with global oil prices settling for once.

CommSec chief economist, super-triathlete and legendary numbers man, Craig James, says more savings are in the post as crude oil prices continue to decline on fears central bank rate hikes will stifle growth.

The Australian Institute of Petroleum (AIP) says average Aussie unleaded was 8 cents cheaper last week, while the wholesale price fell by 17.5 cents a litre.

Tech stocks also led broader gains on local markets. Renewed strength in lithium helped lift the little league.

WiseTech Global (ASX:WTC) made 5% after sharing a bolder earnings outlook on Friday, while BrainChip Holdings (ASX:BRN) found about 7%.

Elsewhere among the wee caps, biotech Imugene (ASX:IMU) says Mike Tonroe is taking over as CFO, once transition arrangements with his current employer Genetic Technologies are sorted in early September.

Around the region the focus continues to be on China where making a meal of growth and containment are becoming a bit of a double act.

China’s zero covid policy is taking much needed momentum out of its economy. Q2 GDP fell -2.6% in the quarter worse than already low expectations, while the annual growth rate clattered to a 0.4%  year on year floor.

Premier Li Keqiang’s 5.5% annual growth target is now looking ridonkulous, but Mr Li has other worries to contend with including not going to jail for the looming crisis in the ongoing property crisis, which is nearing a new and critical crisis point. Crisis.

 

ASX SMALL CAP WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for July 18 [intraday]:

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Look, first up – something’s gone on at the Sarytogan Graphite (ASX:SGA) corporate presso today, because this newly listed graphite digger is rising like a souffle.

The explorer has its grubby mitts and leery eyes all over the Sarytogan Graphite Project in Central Kazakhstan which is un-substitutable in the battery market, with drilling kicking off late last month.

Kazakhstan, aside from being a great place to take the missus for a quick lap around the Urals, is also an established mining jurisdiction right in the middle of the largest battery manufacturers in Europe and China.

The project already has a mineral resource of 209 Mt at 28.5% total graphitic carbon (TGC) for 60Mt contained. And while I’m not going to read the presentation – I am leaving you keen beans a link. Please get back to me with anything worth sharing!

Kincora Copper (ASX:KCC) soaring a mega-healthy 49% on news about its best assay results to date from its Trundle project.

For those of you into assay results porn, the sexy little numbers look like this: 34m @ 1.02g/t gold and 0.24% copper, including 2m @ 12.6g/t gold and 2.32% copper, within a broader zone containing 104m @ 0.46g/t gold and 0.11% copper.

Lode Resources (ASX:LDR) has also got two solid loads of Delightful Drilling Digits to share from its Webbs Consol Silver-Base Metal Project, which were enough to send its price climbing nearly 40% this morning.

The company says one hole has looks like this: 50.0m grading 284g/t silver equivalent from 17m:

  • 50.0m @ 284g/t AgEq1 from 17.0m
  • 38.1m @ 370g/t AgEq1 from 24.6m
  • 15.0m @ 582g/t AgEq1 from 38.1m
  • 1.1m @ 1,001g/t AgEq1 from 49.9m
  • 0.6m @ 1,362g/t AgEq1 from 52.5m

Another of Lode’s holes looks like this: 31.0m grading 224g/t silver equivalent, including

  • 31.0m @ 224g/t AgEq1 from 30.6m
  • 14.0m @ 336g/t AgEq1 from 38.7m
  • 7.5m @ 482g/t AgEq1 from 45.2m
  • 0.6m @ 1,051g/t AgEq1 from 50.4m

… I’ll be in my bunk if anyone needs me.

Off piste, but worth noting Hansen Technologies (ASX:HSN is up about 7%, the global provider of software and services to the energy, water, and communication industries locking in a partnership expansion with Energy Queensland (EQL) – where owners of Australia’s largest electricity distribution network have committed to upgrade to the latest version of Hansen CIS.

The expanded agreement will also be taking new products in Hansen MDM for meter data management and Hansen NBM for network bill management and includes an upgrade of EQL’s existing Hansen CIS for customer care and billing onto Hansen’s latest SaaS platform.

This new agreement builds on the existing long-term relationship between Hansen and EQL and is for an initial term of five years with associated revenue of around $45m.

HSN global chief executive Andrew Hansen says this new agreement adding Hansen MDM and Hansen NBM to the upgrade of Hansen CIS on its latest SaaS platform is a fantastic example of Hansen’s ability to partner with customers, provide valuable solutions and spatter the earth with a remarkable quantity of Three Letter Acronyms (TLAs).

 

ASX SMALL CAP LOSERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for July 18 [intraday]:

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WHAT YOU MAY’VE MISSED, BUT WE SURE AS HELL DID NOT

Anson Resources (ASX:ASN) says its Long Canyon No.2 well continues to deliver more rewards with testing of the clastic zones returning high concentrations of lithium and bromine.

Results such as 18ft (5.49m) grading 240 parts per million lithium and 4,115ppm bromine in Clastic Zone 31 and 46ft at 114ppm lithium and 4,092ppm bromine in Clastic Zone 17 – are said to be similar to previously sampled clastic zones from other wells that are included in the resource estimate for the Paradox lithium project in Utah.

The assays add to the well delivering strong flow rates of up 180 barrels of brines per hour – a 165% jump from the original recorded flow rate, which provides further confidence about the project’s ability to produce the lithium-rich brine without the need for pumping.

Free-flowing brines have the potential to not only reduce the cost of extraction but also increase the producible life at Paradox.

In the pot zone – biotech company Emyria (ASX:EMD) and its partner, University of Western Australia (UWA), have made progress by expanding their proprietary MDMA analogue library.

According to Edward Sunarto who knows what these guys do, some 19 new compounds have just been created, which brings the library size to >125 novel MDMA-like compounds.

Emyria previously secured exclusive rights to all MDMA-like compounds created under the partnership with the UWA, starting with an initial library of more than 100 novel MDMA analogues created over more than 10 years.

Emyria and UWA have been actively growing and screening this unique drug-discovery pipeline to identify new drug candidates, with the potential to address major unmet needs in mental health and neurological disorders.

RemSense (ASX:REM) has announced that it has acquired the Virtual Plant background Intellectual Property (IP) previously owned by Woodside Energy Technologies. RemSense had been locked into a deal to licence the tech for a 5% fee, but bit the bullet and shelled out $400,000 to buy it outright in a bid to streamline its business model. 

Meanwhile, ResApp Health (ASX:RAP) says that the ACCC has given it the thumbs-up to forge ahead with accepting Pfizer’s bid for the company, after the regulator looked over the fine print of the deal. ResApp’s board is urging shareholders to go along with the sale, which looked on shaky ground recently when Pfizer’s due diligence on ResApp’s Covid Cough detector didn’t quite perform as well as either company had hoped. 

And last but not least, DiscovEX Resources (ASX:DCX) says that its recent 2 for 7 Non-Renouncable Rights Issue has closed, coming up a little shorter than hoped. The issue closed on 13 July with a 49% take-up by investors, who nabbed 361,196,840 new shares at 0.004 apiece. Pursuant to  the deal’s underwriting agreement, 75 million shares will be issued to the Directors, and the company says it will spend the $1.74m raised on further exploration at its Sylvania and Edjudina Projects.

 

TRADING HALTS

ANZ (ASX:ANZ) – I think they mentioned something this morning about buying a bank? 

Aurumin Limited (ASX:AUN) – Hat tip. Sorry… cap raise. Same thing. 

Alderan Resources Limited (ASX:AL8) – Capital raise to rebuild the planet that was blown up by the Death Star. Possibly.

Victory Goldfields Limited (ASX:1VG) – Exploration results incoming.

Marmota Limited (ASX:MEU) – capital raising via placement to sophisticated and professional investors. Sounds fancy, no?