Small caps continued their rough trot in the wake of this week’s COVID-19 scare, posting their third straight day of falls.

The Small Ordinaries index finished Tuesday down 49.8 points, or 1.61 per cent, to 3,034.6 — its lowest level since November 30.

Tuesday was the worst loss for the index since a 2.15 per cent decline October 27.

The ASX200 did a bit better, falling 70.3 points, or 1.05 per cent, to a three-week low of 6,599.6.

Every sector except health care and property trusts were down. Energy was the worst hit, tumbling 2.8 per cent as oil prices plunged on new coronavirus  restrictions.

PepinNini Minerals (ASX:PNN) was the biggest gainer, rising 106.7 per cent to 31c after the junior explorer announcd it was proposing to acquire Hillside Minerals, which has applied for a number of exploration licenses in South Australia.


PharmAust (ASX:PAA) was flat at 10.5c after the Western Australia-based clinical-stage oncology received ethics approval to hold a Phase 2b clinical trial using its mTOR inhibitor pill to treat cancer in pet dogs. The trial is a continuation of a Phase 2a trial involving six dogs that had to be discontinued because most of them lost their appetites even as their cancer lesions disappeared. This new trial will be similar but with a different dosing regimen.

Volpara Health Technologies (ASX:VHT) gained 4.5 per cent to $1.38 after the Kiwi breast density software company signed a five-year contract with BreastScreen Queensland, the third-largest public breast screening programmed in the country. Volpara chief executive Ralph Highnam said that contract was “news that will resonate around the world,” because public breast cancer screening programmes operate “under the strictest quality control, which can make change difficult”.

Alterity Therapeutics (ASX:ATH) gained 3.2 per cent to 3.2c after the Melbourne biopharmaceutical company announced it had licensed a novel ionosphore compound technology to combat “superbugs” from UniQuest, the commercialisation arm of the University of Queensland. Alterity has its own zinc ionophore, PBT2, that it hopes to combine with standard antibiotics to use against “superbugs” that have developed resistance.

Stavely Minerals (ASX:SVY) dropped 10.3 per cent to 78c after the junior explorer announced the partial drilling results from its Thursday’s Gossan copper-gold project in Victoria. But a number of assays are still pending due to a laboratory backlog as the mining sector heats up.

Cann Group (ASX:CAN) gained 11.1 per cent to 55c after announcing it had completed its first shipment of medicinal cannabis oil to its UK distribution partner. The oils should be available for UK doctors to prescribe from next week.

MyFiziq (ASX:MYQ) dropped 5.6 per cent to $1.19 after the body composition measurement company announced that its app, co-developed by Adelaide-based Biomorphik, would go live in the Google Play and Apple Store in early 2021. The Biomorphik app will allow body composition scans for $22.99 a month, or $142.99 a year, using only a smartphone camera.

RareX (ASX:REE) announced that diamond drilling at its Trundle gold-copper joint venture in NSW had intersected with “the best observed primary bornite and chalcopyrite zones seen at the project to date”.

Trading halts


Australian Vanadium (ASX:AVL) – updated pre-feasibility study
Dubber Corporation (ASX:DUB) – acquisition
Rafaella Resources (ASX:RFR) – capital raising
BuildingIQ (ASX:BIQ) – receivership appointment
Douugh (ASX:DOU) – acquisition
Rex Minerals (ASX:RXM) – project update


Brainchip (ASX:BRN) – material customer contract
Design Milk (ASX:DMC) – capital raising
Bigtincan (ASX:BTH) – capital raising


At Stockhead, we tell it like it is. While RareX is a Stockhead advertiser, it did not sponsor this article.