Market Highlights and 5 ASX Small Caps to watch on Thursday
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Volatile trading in New York saw US stock markets turn early gains into losses, with all three major benchmarks (S&P 500, Dow Jones, and Nasdaq) closing 1% lower.
Global stocks have taken a beating this week as US bond yields surge, amid expectations of Fed rate hikes.
On Tuesday, the benchmark 10-year Treasury yield rose 4 basis points to 1.82%, its highest level in two years, and it’s climbed another 1 basis point overnight to 1.83%.
Giant tech stocks like Apple and Amazon fell by 2%, but Microsoft rose 0.2% after announcing its biggest acquisition ever the previous day – a US$68bn deal to buy video games creator Activision Blizzard.
Oil prices have rallied by another 1%, with Brent crude now trading at $US88.11 a barrel and hitting a seven-year high.
A drone attack by Yemeni Houthi rebels in the UAE that blew up three fuel tankers overnight has further created uncertainties on the supply side.
Eurozone shares +0.3%
US shares -1% as concerns about infl & rate hikes continue. Nasdaq -1.2% & now -10.7% from Nov hi.S&P -5.5% from Nov hi
US 10 yr yld -2bp to 1.85%
Oil +0.4% to $86.5
Gold +1.5% to $1841.3
Iron ore +2.3% to $130.2
ASX futures +0.1%$A 0.7182 w $US index -0.2%
— Shane Oliver (@ShaneOliverAMP) January 19, 2022
In other markets, spot iron ore is up by 2% and is trading at $US130.20 a tonne, while Bitcoin cointinued its bearish tone and slid another 1.5% to trade at US$41,700 at 8.30am AEDT.
Bloomberg’s senior commodity strategist Mike McGlone however, still very much believes Bitcoin is on track to hit US$100k this year.
Read the rest of that story here on Coinhead.
Despite the late retreat on Wall Street, the ASX 200 looks set to open higher this morning, with futures markets (January contracts) pointing up by 0.40% at 8:30am AEDT.
Yesterday, a last-hour selloff saw the ASX 200 close lower by around 1%, with Tech being the worst performer, down by more than 2% following a similar slump on Nasdaq.
According to the ASX, Block Inc (ASX:SQ2), the new parent of Afterpay, will commence trading on the bourse later today.
Also, the ABS will release unemployment data later today.
In large caps news this morning, Sydney Airport (ASX:SYD) released its traffic performance for December 2021. Overall in 2021, Sydney Airport lost 82% of its passengers compared to 2019.
BNPL heavyweight Zip Co (ASX:Z1p) reported earnings this morning, with record revenue for the December quarter of $167.4 million.
The environmental tech company reported strong results for Q2, with new sales orders of $4.6m, and new annual recurring revenue (ARR) of $1.8m, up 64% on PCP.
Volt Resources (ASX:VRC)
The graphite producer and battery anode material developer reported increasing production at its Zavalievsky Graphite Project in Eastern Europe. The company reported 807 tonnes of graphite production in December, with an average production of approximately 50 tonnes per operating day. This represents a 44% (246 tonnes) increase in graphite production from November.
First Graphene (ASX:FGR)
The company entered into a collaboration agreement with global construction chemicals manufacturer Fosroc for the development of PureGRAPH graphene-enhanced cement additives, or grinding aids. The agreement is a key step in First Graphene’s strategy to help the cement and concrete industries, which are responsible for up to 8% of global carbon dioxide emissions.
Mosaic Brands (ASX:MOZ)
The fashion retailer reported $119 million of online sales for the first half of FY22, a 21% increase against pcp. Total group EBITDA for H1 is now expected to be approximately $8 million, 16% above broker estimates, despite 49,489 store trading days lost in the half.
Future First Tech (ASX:FFT)
The company announced two further contract wins in Western Australia at state and local government level for its asset management software system. No figures were disclosed, but FFT says both contracts will expand its ARR base for its Intelligent Asset Management Platform.