• The ASX is set to open higher on Monday
  • Wall Street and European stock markets finished strongly on Friday
  • Ahead this week, the RBA will release its minutes and Governor Lowe will speak

Local shares are set to open higher today. At 8am AEDT, the ASX 200 July futures is pointing up by 0.80%.

Wall Street and European stock markets posted strong gains on Friday after comments from two US Fed policymakers.

St Louis Fed President James Bullard said he was indifferent between a 75bp or 100bp rate hike at the next Fed meeting on July 26th.

“It probably doesn’t make too much difference to do 100 basis points here and less in the other three meetings (in 2022), or to do 75 basis points here and slightly more in the remaining three meetings of the year,” Bullard said.

His colleague, Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic, also cautioned against the central bank moving “too dramatically”, although he said everything is “in play” on July 26.

US data released on Friday showed that the world’s biggest economy is showing signs of resilience as retail sales rose 1% in June, and 8.4% on a year-on-year basis.

Bank stocks were the best performers on Wall Street on Friday, as Citigroup rose 13% after beating profit expectations and Wells Fargo up 6% despite its revenue falling short of forecast.

The benchmark 10-year US treasury yields have been falling by 15bps over the past week after falling by another 3bp to 2.93% on Friday.

The yield curve remains inverted with the 2-year yield trading at 3.13%, the biggest inversion since 2000. An inverted 2yr vs 10yr is traditionally a sign of an upcoming recession.

Global oil prices rose by 2% on Friday and was flat this morning after the Biden trip to Saudi Arabia bore no immediate fruits. It was reported that the Saudis did not make any promises to increase their output anytime soon.

Spot gold is inching down towards the closely watched US$1,700 level, trading now at $US1,706.50 as the US dollar keeps strengthening against all major currencies.

Bitcoin meanwhile, was down 1% in the last 24 hours to trade at US$20,977 at 8.30am.

In large caps news this morning, ANZ Bank (ASX:ANZ) has ditched its plan to buy MYOB and will instead acquire Suncorp Group’s (ASX:SUN) banking arm for a reported $4.9 billion.

Ahead this week, the RBA will release the minutes of its July meeting on Tuesday while Governor Philip Lowe will speak on Wednesday. The Eurozone CPI will be released later today (Euro time).

5 ASX small caps to watch today

Emyria (ASX:EMD)
The biotech company and its partner, University of Western Australia, have made progress by expanding their proprietary MDMA analogue library. 19 new compounds have just been created, which brings the library size to >125 novel MDMA-like compounds.

Praemium (ASX:PPS)
The investment platform tech company says that total funds under administration (FUA) was $40.5 billion for the June quarter, up 10% on pcp. For the full financial year, net inflows were $2.9 billion, up 92% on pcp.

Anson Resources (ASX:ASN)
Drilling at the Long Canyon No. 2 well has delivered new, high concentrations of lithium and bromine at the Paradox Lithium Project in Utah. Results include: 97ppm Li, 882ppm Br in Clastic Zone 33, and 97ppm Li, 882ppm Br in Clastic Zone 33.

Australian Strategic Materials (ASX:ASM)
ASM CEO, David Woodall, has advised the board of his intention to leave the company immediately. Rowena Smith, ASM’s current chief operating officer, has accepted the appointment of the CEO role, effective immediately.

Vimy Resources (ASX:VMY)
Vimy reported early drilling success at Angularli Alligator River Project in the Northern Territory. The first two diamond holes have intercepted uranium mineralisation up-dip of the Angularli inferred resource, with key intercepts including 5.40m @ 0.45% eU3O8 from 179.9m, and 2.65m @ 0.51% eU3O8 from 170.9m.