ASX to slip as Wall Street falls sharply

US stocks fell sharply overnight, as the oil spike continued to spook global markets.

Brent crude peaked at almost US$140/barrel in Asian hours yesterday, but it was more subdued during New York trade, settling to around US$123.5/barrel.

All three major US indexes tumbled – the S&P 500 by 2.87%, the Dow by 2.29%, and tech heavy Nasdaq by 3.34%.

Energy prices have been rising rampantly after the Biden government said it will consider banning Russian oil and gas imports to the US.

“Iranian oil can’t replace Russian oil, and certainly not at the touch of a button,” said a note from Oanda’s Jeffery Halley.

“Nor is there much capacity within OPEC+ to immediately pump more. Those that can, namely Saudi Arabia and the UAE, are well and truly in the box seat though, and I expect the phones to be ringing in Riyadh and Abu Dubai today, with President Biden wanting “a chat,” he said.

Gold prices are also nibbling around the US$2k mark, trading at US$1,996.50 this morning.

“Gold appears to be following oil prices, so if oil corrects lower again, the fast-money longs are likely to quickly retreat,” said Halley.

The war in Ukraine is now into its 11th day, and experts said a prolonged war could spark the already high inflation rates across the world even higher.

To cryptos, where Bitcoin is trading at US$37,562 on CoinMarketCap at 8am AEDT, from the US$39k level yesterday morning.

A Singapore-based, blockchain-powered private market platform has a new leader — an ambitious new female chief executive who wants to open up private markets to retail investors.

Read the rest of that story here on Coinhead.

ASX 200 to open lower on Tuesday

The ASX 200 is set to open lower this morning, with the March futures pointing down by 0.6% at 8.10am AEDT.

Yesterday, local shares lost just over 1% as Brent touched US$139 during Asian hours. Energy was the best performing sector, up by almost 4% while airlines stocks fell.

The Australian Financial Review Business Summit begins this morning.

Day one speakers include Prime Minister Scott Morrison; Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman; Visy chairman Anthony Pratt; Commonwealth Bank CEO Matt Comyn and Macquarie CEO Shemara Wikramanayake.

5 ASX small caps to watch today

Firstwave Cloud Tech (ASX:FCT)
The cybersecurity company announced the extension and expansion of its contract with key customer, Telstra. The contract has been extended for an additional two years with a further two-year option, and the scope has been expanded to include additional cybersecurity services provided through FirstWave’s CyberCision platform. In FY21, approximately $6.5m revenue was generated from the Telstra agreement with over 95% being recurring revenues.

Saunders International (ASX:SND)
The engineering and construction company has been awarded $17m in new infrastructure projects. These projects include: the design and construction of a 52m long bridge in Narrabri region, and the construction of a 4 span, 45m long bridge in Port Macquarie.

Evolution Energy Minerals (ASX:EV1)
Recently completed electromagnetic (EM) surveys have confirmed the scope for a material expansion in Evolution’s Chilalo mineral resource. Over 33km of high and ultra-high conductance targets have been identified, and given graphite’s high conductivity level, these conductors are expected to represent near-surface, high-grade and thick graphite deposits, the company said.

Buru Energy (ASX:BRU)
Buru says the Rafael flow test was recommenced on Friday 4 March, after the suspension for Cyclone Anika. The object of the continuation of the test is to obtain additional flow and pressure data and stable flowstream samples for gas and liquids analysis.

Stavely Minerals (ASX:SVY)
Diamond drill‐hole SMD173 has intersected a 92.1m zone of inter‐fingered micro‐diorite and Cayley Lode sulphide mineralisation. Stavely says the +90m interval of lode‐style mineralisation is intruded by a 36.7m interval of inter‐fingered late, barren micro‐diorite, potentially displacing an even broader intersection of lode‐style mineralisation.