Wall Street at fresh record highs

All three key US benchmarks rose and reached fresh record highs on Friday, ahead of kick-off in earnings season.

The Dow Jones was up by 1.30%, S&P 500 by 1.13%, and tech heavy Nasdaq by 0.98%.

Bank stocks led the rise, after US 10-year treasury yields rose by 7 basis points.

Meanwhile, Richard Branson has become the first billionaire to travel to space and back, after his Virgin Galactic spacecraft returned from the edge of the earth’s atmosphere.

To cryptos, where Bitcoin is currently trading at US$34,400 level at 8am AEST, up from the US$32,600 level on Friday.

In his latest tweet, Elon Musk has once again endorsed Dogecoin at the expense of Bitcoin and Ethereum.


ASX 200 set to open lower on Monday

Following the rise on Wall Street, the ASX 200 looks set to open higher at the open this morning, with futures markets (September contracts) pointing up by 0.71 per cent at 8:30am AEST.

On Friday, the index plunged by 0.93, with all 11 sectors down, including Technology falling by over 3%, and Consumer Discretionary (mainly travel stocks) by 2%.

5 ASX small caps to watch today

Australian Pharma Industries (ASX:API)
announced it has received an unsolicited proposal from Wesfarmers Limited (ASX:WES) to acquire 100% of the shares in API by way of a scheme of arrangement. The indicative price is $1.38 cash per share, with the API share price closing at $1.15 on Friday.

Zelira Therapeutics (ASX:ZLD)
The cannabis company announced that it has obtained IRB (Institutional Review Board) approval for its 12-week Observational Clinical Study to evaluate the efficacy, safety and tolerability of its proprietary, patent protected product against a multi-billion dollar ‘Big Pharmaceutical’ company drug.

PharmAust (ASX:PAA)
The company has executed a Research Services Agreement with the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute (WEHI), Melbourne to investigate the effects of monepantel (MPL) upon human T-lymphotrophic virus-1 (HTLV-1) infections in vitro.

DroneShield (ASX:DRO)
The counter-drone company reported 2Q21 quarterly customer receipts of $7.4 million, an all-time record, despite COVID slowdown. 1H21 cash receipts of $9.1 million, a 600% growth over 1H20 cash receipts.

Swoop Holdings (ASX:SWP)
The telco company will acquire 100% of South Australian-based wireless broadband provider Beam Internet. Purchase price of $6.7 million on a “cash free debt free basis” comprising $6.0 million in cash and $700,000 in Swoop shares.