Wall Street mixed as AMC gets pumped again

Major indices in the US were mixed last night, ahead of Thursday’s US inflation report for May.

The Dow Jones fell by 0.36%, S&P 500 was down by 0.08%, while tech-heavy Nasdaq was up by 0.49%.

Reddit meme stock AMC Entertainment finished higher again by almost 15 per cent, with the SEC warning that it is watching the market closely for meme stocks and other manipulative trading.

Meanwhile, US pharma stock Biogen rose by 38% after a landmark decision by the FDA to approve its controversial Alzheimer’s disease therapy.

In other markets, commodities were mainly softer with iron ore and oil both falling by around 1%.

Bitcoin is also falling again, trading at US$34,200 at 8am AEDT, after trading at US$35,900 on Monday.

El Salvador could become the first country to adopt BTC as legal tender, after its president announced the move yesterday.

Closer to home

The ASX 200 fell slightly by 0.19% on Monday, but the tech index soared 2.8 per cent.

One of the catalysts for tech’s success yesterday was a $5 billion takeover bid for Altium (ASX:ALU) made by NASDAQ-listed Autodesk. Although Altium rejected the bid, saying the current price undervalued it, the receipt of such an offer was enough to send it up.

5 ASX small caps to watch today

Immutep (ASX:IMM)
The immune-oncology company said that it is about to undergo a new anti-LAG-3 research program in collaboration with Cardiff University. The ultimate aim of the project is to make an oral treatment available to cancer patients, and at a lower cost compared with the current anti-LAG-3 antibodies being developed by several companies.

Evolve Education (ASX:EVO)
The child education company reported that its Australian operations have been delivering a very strong performance. For the week ending 23 May, occupancy in the southern states was 87.8% and over 80% in Queensland. This, the company says, is an encouraging result given that seasonality in Australia usually leads to the second half of the calendar year being much stronger than the first half.

Mad Paws (ASX:MPA)
The pet services company said it has entered into a binding agreement to acquire one of Australia’s largest dog treats and toys subscription business, Waggly Club. Mad Paws will acquire 100% of the shares in Gasset Group (Waggly’s owner) for $2 million in cash and $1 million in Mad Paws shares.

OM Holdings (ASX:OMH)
The manganese ore producer said that it has obtained approvals from Malaysian regulators to proceed with the listing of its shares on Malaysia’s Main Market of Bursa Securities exchange. OMH’s shares have been publicly traded on the ASX since 1998, and it will continue to maintain this primary listing on the ASX.

Aguia Resources (ASX:AGR)
The Brazil-based exploration company announced that the Development Bank of Southern Brazil has approved a loan to Aguia of $3.75 million for the purpose of capex funding for the Três Estradas Phosphate Project. The approval of this loan gives Aguia sufficient capital to fund the $7.37 million for the construction of the project.