Wall Street mixed on subdued Fed minutes

Investors breathed a sigh of relief overnight after the Fed minutes were less hawkish than many expected.

The minutes showed that rates will be raised in March along with a reduction in the size of the Fed’s balance sheet, but the memo says the central bank won’t be rushed into a faster tightening pace.

Investors were also pleased with data that showed US retail sales increasing by 3.8% in January, much higher than the 2% consensus estimate.

In corporate news, gig economy stock Fiverr plunged 10% ahead of its Q4 earnings release on concerns over its short term prospects.

With war tensions simmering, Brent crude has now dropped back to US$90.46, but gold has rallied back to US$1868.30 at the time of writing.

To crypto news, where Bitcoin lost 1% to trade at US$44,100 at 8.30am AEDT.

Meanwhile, Australia’s fourth-largest online broking platform, SelfWealth (ASX:SWF) says it will offer crypto trading in partnership with Melbourne crypto exchange BTC Markets – but hasn’t said when the product will launch.

Read the rest of that story here by Coinheader Derek Rose.

ASX 200 to open higher on Thursday

The ASX 200 index looks set to follow Wall Street higher this morning, with futures markets (March contracts) pointing up by 0.047% at 8:30am AEDT.

Yesterday, the Healthcare sector (up 5%) dragged the ASX 200 to over 1%, on the back of CSL’s solid first half. The blood plasma giant carries more than 60% of the sector’s weighting.

In large cap news this morning, Wesfarmers (ASX:WES) has cut its interim dividend by 10% after its first half profit slumped by 12.7 %to $1.2 billion.

Today will be a very busy day in large caps’ earnings results, with the likes of Telstra, Woodside, Whitehaven and Crown all reporting later in the day.

5 ASX small caps to watch today

Douugh (ASX:DOU)
The fintech announced that its application to dual list on the OTCQB in the US has been accepted and the company’s shares are now traded under the code: OTCQB:DOUUF.

Pentanet (ASX:5GG)
The telco’s half year delivered a revenue increase 67% (on pcp) to $8m. Gross profit also increased by 100% (on pcp) to $3.9m, as subscriber numbers were up by 55% to 14,798.

Amplia Therapeutics (ASX:ATX)
The cancer and fibrosis biotech said that its AMP945 drug can improve the effectiveness of current standard of care in an animal model using human pancreatic cancer cells. Study results showed the addition of AMP945 to standard care gemcitabine/Abraxane chemo regimen increased survival rate by 33%.

Etherstack (ASX:ESK)
The tech company’s full year FY21 underlying NPAT was US$1.46m vs FY20 of US$0.1m. This was on the back of a massive increase in revenue for the year, which grew to US$8.5m in FY21, representing an 81% increase vs FY20.

Askari Metals (ASX:AS2)
Survey completed at the Yarrie Lithium Project in eastern Pilbara has identified numerous high priority exploration targets. The company says on-ground exploration to field test will commence as soon as practicable.


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