The ASX 200 started fairly strongly but lost ground into the closing bell to finished 0.19% higher.

Two dominant thematics over the past month — surging oil prices and the uranium bull market — were both in full effect today as resources and energy stocks climbed.

Inflation chatter also remains prevalent after a hot CPI print across the Tasman in New Zealand this morning.

That prompted a move in the bond market as yields rose. Banking stocks finished higher but tech stocks dragged, as the ASX 200 Information Technology index was one of only a few sectors in the red today, falling by 1.24%.


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Among the ASX stocks with a market cap of $1bn or more, green lithium play Vulcan Energy (ASX:VUL) was among the leaders after securing a binding offtake agreement with European materials technology Umicore.

Under the terms of deal, Umicore will purchase a minimum of 28,000 tonnes and a maximum of 42,000 tonnes of battery grade lithium hydroxide from Vulcan, with pricing to be based on market prices on a take-or-pay basis.

(Take-or-pay is an agreement to pay for goods when they are delivered, or pay a penalty).

Another large cap leader was uranium play Paladin Energy (ASX:PDN), which continued climbing and has now doubled since the uranium bull market took off at the end of August.

Base metal prices are surging, and large cap nickel play Nickel Mines (ASX:NIC) was among the leaders after announcing its 80%-owned subsidiary had inked to deal to sell excess limonite ore from its Hengjaya Mine in Indonesia.

The limonite ore had “historically been treated as overburden” and the company is now gearing up for larger sales in 2022, following the execution of its first shipment.

Other high-profile names in the large cap winner’s list included Lynas Rare Earths (ASX:LYC) and ~$18bn BHP spinout South32 (ASX:S32), which released its 2021 Sustainable Briefing presentation to the market this morning.

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Today’s large cap loser’s list had a fairly strong tech & IT vibe.

BNPL play Sezzle (ASX:SZL) dipped more than 6% while ecommerce companies Redbubble (ASX:RBL) and (ASX:KGN) also lost ground.

Also on the laggard’s list today were two large cap tech stalwarts — logistics software company WiseTech Global (ASX:WTC) along with Dicker Data (ASX:DDC).