Market highlights and 5 ASX small caps to watch on Wednesday
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All major US indices slid on Tuesday, but stayed near record highs gained the previous day.
Dow Jones closed 0.29% lower, S&P500 dropped 0.1%, while tech heavy NASDAQ slid 0.05%.
The falls came despite the International Monetary Fund (IMF) upgrading global growth outlook to 6%, from 5.5% less than three months ago.
The IMF also expected the Australian economy to grow by 4.5% this year, after contracting by 2.4% for the full year of 2020.
In other markets, oil prices were up by 1%, after falling by 6% yesterday. Iron ore was up 1.4%, while the 10-year US yield was trading at 1.66%.
Bitcoin is steady at USD$58,200 at 8am AEDT.
As expected, the RBA has kept interest rates at 0.1 per cent, after yesterday’s meeting. The bank said it will monitor housing prices closely, after the market recorded its strongest average price rise in almost five years.
Payments business EML Payments (ASX:EML) announced the acquisition of European open banking and account-to-account payments provider Sentenial.
Medlab Clinical (ASX:MDC)
The biotech company is set to rise today, after advising it has received an Intention to Grant notice from the European Patent Office, for its patent covering the use of the company’s NanoCelle sub-micron delivery platform in Europe, including the UK. The patent will provide protection until 2036, and will be the second granted for NanoCelle, following receipt of an Australian patent in September 2020.
Another biotech company, Immutep, looks set for a positive day after announcing that it has a grant patent number from the European Patent Office, for its “combination therapies comprising antibody molecules to LAG-3”. The antibody is a humanised form of Immutep’s IMP701 antibody, which is out-licensed to Novartis AG, a company listed on the NYSE.
AFT Pharma (ASX:AFP)
The company announced an extension to its Maxigesic IV commercialisation agreements, adding the Polish company Mercapharm and the Greek company, Vianex as partners for the patented combination pain killer. The agreements cover territories with a total population of more than 48.5 million people. Maxigesic IV is an intravenous formulation developed as a line extension to Maxigesic tablets, for use post-operatively in hospitals when patients cannot take a medicine orally.
The counter-drone tech company announced it has received an order in total amount of approximately $1.1 million from a high profile government customer from a Five Eyes country. This new contract, placed by an existing customer, represents a follow-up order from previously announced orders in March.
The IT services company announced that IBM has subcontracted COSOL to provide its proprietary RPConnect, and professional data migration services for the Australian Department of Defence’s ERP transformation programme. The contract is an extension to the current agreement on DoD’s ERP program, with a total contract value of $8.5 million and positive contribution to FY21.