ASX to rise as Wall Street advances for second straight day

Australian shares are set to open higher following another US stocks rally overnight.

All three US benchmarks rose – the S&P 500 by 0.69%, Dow Jones by 0.78%, and Nasdaq by 0.75%.

Still, the US stockmarket suffered its worst January – with S&P 500 down by more than 5% for the month – since the global financial crisis of 2009.

Netflix regained 7% overnight after a 30% fall for the month, and Alphabet (Google) rose 2% after its quarterly sales jumped to US$75.3 billion, above the estimate of US$72bn.

Meanwhile, the latest US economic data shows that inflationary pressures are still rising, after the ISM manufacturing index soared from 68.2 to 76.1, and the JOLTS data showed the labor market remains super tight with job openings rising to 10.93 million.

In Europe, the Bank of England is expected to increase its rate again later today by 25bp to 0.50%.

To cryptos, where Bitcoin is trading flat at US$38,653 at 8.30am AEDT.

First Digital Trust COO Gunnar Jaerv recently caught up with Stockhead to discuss DeFi’s benefits, regulatory action as well as where things are heading this year.

Read the rest of that story here on Coinhead.


ASX 200 to open higher on Wednesday

The ASX 200 index looks set to open higher this morning, with futures markets (February contracts) pointing up by more than 0.10% at 8:30am AEDT.

Yesterday, the local index posted steady gains of 0.49%, as tech stocks and financials rose while resources stocks lagged behind.

The ASX 200 got a bit of a boost in afternoon trade, as the RBA refrained from any hawkish tilt in its outlook for domestic interest rates, instead choosing a “patient” approach to monitoring inflation and keeping the cash rate at 0.1%.

Later today, the ABS will issue its “Selected Cost of Living” indexes for the December quarter, detailing changes over time in the purchasing power of the after-tax incomes of Aussie households.

And the RBA Governor Philip Lowe will deliver a speech at the National Press Club in Sydney at 12.30pm AEDT.

In large cap news this morning, Telstra (ASX:TLS) says its will invest around $1.5bn over the next five years in two major telecommunications infrastructure projects to improve connectivity across Australia.


5 ASX small caps to watch today

Boss Energy (ASX:BOE)
Strong drilling results have highlighted the potential to increase production rate and mine life of the Accelerated Discovery Initiative (ADI) exploration drilling at Honeymoon. Drilling results include: 2.25m @ 774ppm pU3O8 from 82.25m (GT = 1,742 m.ppm).

Strike Energy (ASX:STX)
The company announced that Project Haber has been awarded Major Project Status by the Australian Federal Government. The award was based on the opportunity that Project Haber offers to advance Australia’s downstream manufacturing industry, and support the integration of low carbon technologies and renewable hydrogen.

Ricegrowers Ltd (ASX:SGLLV)
Ricegrowers Singapore has today renewed its supply arrangements with a strategic commercial partner in China, for the supply of milled white rice to SunRice’s key markets throughout the Pacific. The two supply agreements will ensure the supply of milled white rice to key markets in the Pacific throughout FY23, and expire on 30 April 2023.

Turaco Gold (ASX:TCG)
Maiden RC and air core drilling at Satama has confirmed shallow gold discovery. Initial drill results from less than 60m vertical depth include: 12m @ 3.80g/t gold from 24m, and 20m @ 1.61g/t gold from surface.

Talga Group (ASX:TLG)
Drilling at Talga’s Vittangi Graphite Project delivers further solid graphite grades over substantial widths, including: 52m @ 29.0% Cg (from 128m) NUN21005 including 19m @ 40.0% Cg.