Mixed start to the month on Wall Street

Wall Street was mixed, with the Dow Jones and S&P500 indices rising by 0.70% and 0.275 respectively, while tech heavy NASDAQ was down by 0.48%.

Broadly speaking, investors ditched technology, financial, and communication stocks.

Earnings season is still under way in the US. Pepsi’s quarterly revenue rose by 6.8% and beat forecasts. Health company Eli Lilly’s first quarter missed both earnings and sales.

Meanwhile, Bill Gates announced on Twitter that he is getting divorced.

In other markets, oil rose by 1%, and Bitcoin has risen to US$57,600 level at at 8am AEDT, after trading at US$56,000 level on Monday.

Closer to home

The ASX 200 finished slightly higher by 0.04 per cent on Monday.

The RBA is to announce its interest rates decision later today.

In big caps news, Ramsay Health Care (ASX:RHC) announced that credit rating agency Fitch has ascribed Ramsay’s Wholly Owned Funding Group (WOFG) an investment grade credit rating of BBB (Stable).

5 ASX small caps to watch today

Infomedia (ASX:IFM)
The technology company that specialises in the automotive industry announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire US-based e-commerce platform, SimplePart. The upfront consideration is for US$24.5 million, plus an earn-out of up to US$20.5 million over three years. SimplePart specialises in aftersales providing online parts, accessories and service e-commerce solutions that enable automakers and dealers to sell directly to consumers.

Recce Pharma (ASX:RCE)
The drugs company announced that its lead drug RECCE 327 has demonstrated bactericidal activity against all six antibiotic resistant ESKAPE pathogens, including drug resistant mutations, as well as two additional World Health Organisation priority pathogens list. With this result, Recce is now on track to to be the only company developing an efficacious anti-infective against ESKAPE pathogens globally.

Nick Scali (AZX:NCK)
The home furnishings retailer has just upgraded its outlook. It announced that full year NPAT to 30 June will now be in the range of $78 million to $80 million, an increase of approximately 85% to 90% on the previous financial year. This upgrade is as a result of its strong momentum in the first half.

Palla Pharma (ASX:PAL)
The opiate manufacturer and supplier to the pain relief market announced that it has formally launched its Co-Codamol 30/500 caplet in the UK market. This product is the first to be launched by Palla Pharma after receipt of the final approvals by the MHRA in late February. The company also said it has settled all outstanding legal issues with its largest API customer, M&A Pharmachem, and together have entered into a long-term production partnership.

Wide Open Agriculture (ASX:WOA)
The regenerative food and agricultural company announced that preliminary results have confirmed WOA’s GM-free, gluten-free lupin protein has applications for multiple food products. This initial testing will provide the framework for further sensory and taste testing, which will lead to the creation of one proof of concept food or drink product using the lupin protein.