• ASX is set to open higher this morning
  • US Fed Jerome Powell says a US recession is a ‘possibility’
  • Bitcoin slips below US$20k again, says get me off this ride

The ASX is set to open higher by 0.40% this morning despite a fall on Wall Street overnight.

Stocks in the US retreated marginally after a rally on Tuesday – with all major indexes falling by around 0.15%.

Fed chairman Jerome Powell’s comments weighed heavily on markets after he told Congress that a recession is a ‘possibility’.

“It’s certainly a possibility,” Mr Powell said during the first of two days of congressional hearings.

“We are not trying to provoke and do not think we will need to provoke a recession, but we do think it’s absolutely essential” to bring down inflation, which is running at a 40-year high.”

“The events of the last few months around the world have made it more difficult for us to achieve what we want,” he added.

Yields on 10-year US Treasuries tumbled by 12bps to 3.15% after his comments.

In commodities, oil prices slumped by 5% with the benchmark Brent crude now trading at US$109.73 a barrel.

In response to soaring gas prices in the US, President Biden has called for a three-month freeze of the national gasoline tax.

“I fully understand that a gas tax holiday alone is not going to fix the problem,” he said.

“But it will provide families some immediate relief, just a little bit of breathing room as we continue working to bring down prices for the long haul”.

Meanwhile, Bitcoin has crossed below the all important US$20k level, and is trading at US$19,972 at 8.15am AEST.

What next then for BTC?

Unfortunately our crystal ball’s busted, but we do got The Badman who writes on crypto like love kicks you in the teeth. We also offer a la carte crypto factoids and a free crypto-shake, a short, sharp shot of crypto espresso and various Coinheads can at least give you an analytical taaste of the best minds on Crypto Twitter, the Moon and beyond.

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5 ASX small caps to watch today

Bubs Australia (ASX:BUB)
President Biden announced he will be sourcing further flights, facilitated by the US Department of Health and Human Services under Operation Fly Formula to transport an additional 180,000 tins of Bubs Infant Formula to the US. By mid July, 361,299 cans of Bubs Infant Formula are expected to have been made available to major retailers across 34 US states.

Pentanet (ASX:5GG)
Pentanet has launched neXus, the company’s mesh wireless network for Perth. The neXus will be exclusive to Pentanet, and is set to deliver an ultra high-speed wireless internet connection through the air using an innovative mesh technology. Pentanet believes the neXus technology will be disruptive for the telco industry. The names pass the futuristic tech test.

Spacetalk (ASX:SPA)
Spacetalk has entered into agreements to provide a JumpySIM virtual mobile network service in Australia. JumpySIM in Australia will use part of Telstra’s 4G and 3G mobile network. Once launched, Spacetalk wearables like Kids, Adventurer and Life will include the JumpySIM mobile networked SIM. This name passes the family friendly futuristic-tech test.

MedLab Clinical (ASX:MDC)
MedLab has signed an agreement with YesHealth for the exclusive distribution rights for Medlab’s branded nutraceutical lines in Malaysia, Vietnam, and (non-exclusive) Singapore. Under the 5-year deal, Medlab will supply nutraceuticals on a cost-plus basis, as well as receive royalties on net sales.

Metal Hawk (ASX:MHK)
Metal Hawk advised that IGO Limited (ASX: IGO)’s subsidiary Western Areas has satisfied the Stage-1 requirements of its earn-in and joint venture agreement with Metal Hawk, after having spent $3m on exploration across the joint venture projects. IGO has now elected to proceed to Stage-2 with a further $4m expenditure required to earn an additional 24% interest.