‘Sad Guys on Trading Floors’ is gallows humour for the recession.

These guys have been making light of a “terrifying financial crisis” on-and-off since 2008 — the dark days of the GFC — with traffic periodically spiking when markets take a sustained hit.


US markets plunged again on Wednesday after the World Health Organisation upgraded COVID-19 to ‘global pandemic’ status, making it the first official bear market since the financial crisis.

A bear market is when an index closes 20 per cent or more below its most recent closing high.

There were silver linings though with more indications that business in China, the birthplace of COVID-19, is already ramping back up again.

Stocks worldwide lost ground despite stimulus efforts to soften the economic blow of the virus. In Australia, the federal government is launching its own Kevin Rudd-style cash splash, unveiling an initial economic stimulus package which could be worth up $20bn.

By about 12pm the ASX200 was down 2.78 per cent to 5,558 points — a ~22 per cent drop from its late February highs.



Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm Thursday March 12:

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ARO Astro Resources 0.003 +150.00% 2.54M
ATH Alterity Therapeutics 0.02 +58.33% 10.71M
AYR Alloy Resources 0.0015 +50.00% 2.09M
CZN Corazon Mining 0.003 +50.00% 4.82M
GTE Great Western Exploration 0.003 +50.00% 2.51M
CLT Cellnet Group 0.14 +40.00% 6.26M
FZO Family Zone Cyber Safety 0.12 +35.29% 20.5M
AHL AHAlife Holdings 0.004 +33.33% 3.63M
ANL Amani Gold 0.002 +33.33% 12.3M
SVA Simavita 0.02 +33.33% 7.69M
FML Focus Minerals 0.22 +28.57% 32M
RNO Rhinomed 0.14 +27.27% 18.6M
PMY Pacifico Minerals 0.005 +25.00% 14.4M
AMT Allegra Orthopaedics 0.13 +23.81% 10.45M
ERL Empire Resources 0.01 +20.00% 7.75M
BOC Bougainville Copper 0.25 +19.05% 84.2M
ARM Aurora Minerals 0.01 +16.67% 1.41M
HAS Hastings Technology Metals 0.09 +14.81% 83.8M
CZR Coziron Resources 0.01 +14.29% 16.7M
FNT Frontier Resources 0.01 +14.29% 3.91M
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The web safety platform said it’s now bringing in annual recurring revenues of more than $2m from its US operations.

Investors appeared to be impressed with some other strong metrics around the sales figure, which was achieved within 12 months and a four-person sales team.

The company added that it’s well-positioned to benefit from pending changes stemming from the coronavirus pandemic, where school districts will be required to explore home-schooling solutions.


The biotech says its drug may restore immune functions in HIV patients — which means these patients may not need to stay on anti-HIV drugs for life.

In 2018, Biotron’s BIT225 was shown to have an impact on patients with HIV-1 — the most common and infectious variety of HIV.

The company has spent much of its time ever since preparing for a phase three clinical trial, as well as pre-clinical programs for other diseases including the coronavirus.

Also spiking 60 per cent on no news was Alterity Therapeutics (ASX:ATH), which was granted ‘orphan drug status’ for the treatment of Multiple System Atrophy (MSA) by the European Commission back in January.



Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks at 12pm Thursday March 12:

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SBR Sabre Resources 0.001 -50.00% 1.7M
CIO Connected IO 0.001 -50.00% 4.82M
TPO Tian Poh Resources 0.05 -44.44% 34.8M
WCN White Cliff Minerals 0.001 -33.33% 1.41M
TPD Talon Petroleum 0.002 -33.33% 1.78M
SHH Shree Minerals 0.001 -33.33% 1.82M
ROG Red Sky Energy 0.002 -33.33% 1.63M
RFN Reffind 0.001 -33.33% 2.05M
NWC New World Resources 0.01 -30.77% 11.4M
WTL WT Financial Group 0.02 -25.81% 4.67M
VIP VIP Gloves 0.03 -25.64% 25.4M
RED Red 5 0.2 -25.45% 342.4M
SMI Santana Minerals 0.003 -25.00% 8.14M
MSR Manas Resources 0.0015 -25.00% 5.29M
LCT Living Cell Technologies 0.01 -25.00% 9.14M
KOR Korab Resources 0.01 -25.00% 2.66M
HSC HomeStay Care 0.003 -25.00% 6.03M
CFE Cape Lambert Resources 0.003 -25.00% 4.87M
VRS Veris 0.03 -24.32% 13.8M
OAU Ora Gold 0.01 -21.05% 12.3M
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RED 5 (ASX:RED) -25%

The gold producer now expects March quarter production to be lower than expected; 20,000-22,000oz compared to previous guidance of between 25,000-29,000oz.

Full-year production will also be impacted. Costs are also on the high side, with the company expecting March quarter and full-year all in sustaining costs of $1,800-$1,950/oz and $1,550-$1,600/oz respectively.