• Benchmark and small cap index down hard
  • Life on the indices can be hard, unless your in energy, possibly materials
  • Pearl Gull Iron is an island, literally and figuratively

 

The ASX200 and its emerging companies sidekick have retreated into a shell of post-Wall Street shock on Thursday with the weight of rising rates also hanging heavily around the necks of gold and banking stocks.

The benchmark lost 1.5% and the small cap (XEC) index 1.8%. Another strong session for the energy sector didn’t do nothing to offset no-one.

US stocks fell overnight, thanks largely to the shock return to the public eye of: Former Finance Minister Mathias Cormann, now masquerading as some kind of European.

“As a result of Russia’s war, global growth will be lower, and inflation will be higher for longer,” said Mathias Cormann overnight.

“Both business investment and private consumption growth have been hit, and the war has further exacerbated supply chain disruptions previously brought on by the pandemic, which is pushing up energy and food prices and causing significant price volatility.”

He’s over at the OECD now. depressing global markets as its Secretary-General. Matthias lowered his global growth forecast. He’ll be back.

 

TODAY’S BIGGEST SMALL CAP WINNERS

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

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Up about one million per cent on no news is Pearl Gull Iron (ASX:PLG)

First up, what’s fun about Pearl Gull Iron is its mining title over a significant whack of Cockatoo Island.

Cockatoo Island is situated off the coast waaaaay up in Northwest Australia where its ‘rich history of high-grade iron ore mining since the 1950’s’ can be continued in shrouded mystery, if not secrecy.

PLG is drilling into thick, high-grade iron ore goodness at the ‘Switch Pit’, including ~57m grading 68.9% fe from ~80m.

That’s high. The benchmark grade often quoted is 62% fe – anything higher than this can attract a substantial price premium from buyers.

Aside from rare exceptions like Mount Gibson Iron’s (ASX:MGX) Koolan Island mine – right next door to Cockatoo — Australia doesn’t have many high grade hematite resources like those in Brazil or Africa.

Geological and resource modelling has now kicked off and expected to be delivered very soon.

“Once our resource work is complete, we look forward to updating the market with further plans for our high-grade iron ore project,” chairman Russell Clark says.

The $3m market cap minnow is down 30% year-to-date. It had $1.1m in the bank at the end of March.

Race Oncology (ASX:RAC)   share price is heading in the right direction after telling the market it will be conducing an on-market share buyback, running over the next 12 months with an many as up 4 million Race Oncology shares up for grabs.

And well done Internet of Things (IoT) play Zimi (ASX:ZMM), which is rising nicely following a late May announcement about expanding its product range.

 

TODAY’S BIGGEST SMALL CAP LOSERS

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

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As if to remind us how little justice there is in an open market, not to mention a free media, Indiana Resources’ (ASX:IDA) latest drilling, which by the way, continues to highlight the scale of the Minos prospect within its Central Gawler Craton gold project in South Australia has led the stock price to shed about 7%.

The first batch of assays from its April drill program of 14 holes confirmed shallow, continuous zones of gold mineralisation with top hits such as 14m at 2.56g/t gold from 44m and 24m at 1.41g/t gold from 37m including 1m at 16g/t gold.

While assays are still pending for another five holes, the results to date have already significantly improved  confidence in defining a maiden resource estimate for the project.

Gold mineralisation has now been confirmed over a 600m strike length at Minos, which remains open in both directions and at depth.

“The consistent delivery of high-quality results from drilling within the Minos Prospect has been nothing short of sensational, and these latest results continue to demonstrate the potential for the area to host a mineralised system of significance,” technical director Felicity Repacholi-Muir says.

“Importantly, drilling reinforces that mineralisation identified to date commences near surface and is coherent with the clear potential to define additional mineralisation along strike.”

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS YOU MAY’VE MISSED

In disturbing news out of northern Mozambique, Syrah Resources (ASX:SYR) has reported that there’s been an insurgent attack at a mine project site approximately 200km from Balama in Cabo Delgado province. It’s the second major security incident in the area in the past few days, representing a serious deterioration of safety levels. The news has led to a significant drop in Syrah’s price, which is set to close ~9.0% down for the day.

Closer to home, Australian Strategic Materials Ltd (ASX:ASM) has announced that its Australian Strategic Materials (Holdings) Limited subsidiary has decided that South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering is the team to move forward with on the engineering, procurement and construction definition work (EPCD) for the Dubbo Project, with the contract price settling at $46.7m, fixed for three months.

And Gold Road Resources’ (ASX:GOR) bid for its friendly, off-market takeover of DGO Gold Limited (ASX:DGO) has inched forward a little more, with the company increasing its overall holding to approximately 41.90% of the total number of DGO Shares on issue. DGO currently holds 14.4% of market darling De Grey Mining (ASX:DEG), which is sitting on a veritable mountain of shiny stuff that just about everybody wants a piece of.

TRADING HALTS

Triton Minerals Ltd (ASX: TON) –announcement regarding a security incident

92 Energy Limited (ASX: 92E) –  capital raise

Tesoro Gold Limited (ASX: TSO) – capital raise