World stock markets bounced back after Friday’s rout

Stock markets in US and Europe made a rebound overnight, following the knee jerk selloff last Friday on Omicron fears.

Although data is still being gathered, there are early signs the new coronavirus variant isn’t as deadly as its Delta cousin.

Pharma majors are already working on new boosters, with Moderna saying that it could have a new vaccine formulated to neutralise Omicron in early 2022.

All three major US stock markets indexes rose overnight – the Dow Jones by 0.77%, the S&P 500 by 1.41%, and tech heavy Nasdaq by 1.93%.

In Europe, the rebound was less pronounced, with most major stock market indexes rising by only around 0.5%.

Big US tech stocks climbed back, Tesla by 5%, and Apple, Amazon, Alphabet by 2.5% each.

And in breaking news, Jack Dorsey has stepped down from his role as CEO of Twitter which he co-founded in 2006. He will be replaced immediately by current CTO, Parag Agrawal.

Elsewhere, commodities also rebounded strongly with Brent crude gaining 3.5% after the 13% plunge, ahead of the OPEC+ meeting this Thursday. The spot iron ore price is also up by 6.8% to US$103.27 a tonne.

Meanwhile Bitcoin has risen sharply to US$58,100 at 8am AEDT, from US$54,900 yesterday.

Every coin in the top 10 by market cap is looking a bit stronger today than they were on Friday and the weekend, up roughly 4.5 to 10% over the past 24 hours.

Read the rest of the story here.


ASX 200 to open higher on Tuesday

The ASX 200 looks set to open higher this morning, with futures markets (December contracts) pointing up by 0.54% at 8:30am AEDT.

Yesterday, the ASX finished 0.54% down. Resources and tech managed to finish in the green, but all other sectors were down, led by energy which lost 1.4%.

On the IPO front, two companies are listing today – biotherapeutics company Biome Australia (ASX:BIO) at 10.30am AEDT, and lithium explorer Winsome Resources (ASX:WR1) at 12.30pm AEDT.

WR1 has three lithium projects in Quebec, Canada. 

Later today, ANZ and Roy Morgan will be jointly releasing the weekly consumer confidence index.

And to round off a busy Tuesday, the Reserve Bank deputy governor Guy Debelle will be participating in what is described as a “fireside chat” at the ACI Australia conference.

In large cap news this morning, Westpac (ASX:WBC) has admitted that it was charging fees to the dead, and has reached an agreement to resolve six issues that are currently before the Federal Court.

Westpac and regulator ASIC have agreed on the proposed penalties for each of the proceedings, totalling $113 million.

5 ASX small caps to watch today

Toro Energy (ASX:TOE)
Review is underway to identify opportunities across Toro’s Australian uranium portfolio. Toro holds significant uranium resources inside the Wiluna Uranium Project, and said it wants to evaluate other exploration opportunities to take advantage of improving uranium market condition.

The media company will acquire the BusinessDesk premier news website business from publisher Content Ltd for NZD$3.5 million in cash, and NZD$1.5 million subject to earnings targets. NZME said the acquisition will supercharge its digital growth strategy.

PolarX Ltd (ASX:PXX)
PolarX has successfully completed four exploration programs at its Caribou Dome copper project in Alaska, and its Humboldt-Range gold-silver project in Nevada. At Caribou Dome, massive sulphide drill intersections with visible copper sulphides were found, the company said. And in Humboldt, gold-silver mineralisation was found with drilling to start in the March quarter of 2022.

Albion Resources (ASX:ALB)
The company said reverse circulation (RC) drilling has commenced on the Ni-Cu prospects at its 100% owned Leinster Project in WA. This project covers the same nickel sulphide bearing unit as Auroch’s the Horn, and lies adjacent to BHP’s Nickel West Weebo Ni deposit.

Alice Queen (ASX:AQX)
The gold and copper explorer has commenced a second DDIP (dipole-dipole induced polarisation) survey at its Horn Island Project in North Queensland. DDIP is a proven technique for generating sulphide targets, and is designed to generate additional high priority targets for drilling. The company said much of the hydrothermal footprint at Horn Island remains untested, and drilling is expected to commence in Q1 of 2022.