• Local shares to open lower on Monday as US Big Tech retreated
  • Bill Gross says Treasuries are overvalued
  • City Index provides three most common type of scams


The ASX is set to open lower by -0.35% on Monday as Wall Street ended mixed in a choppy trading session on Friday.

The Nasdaq fell -0.68% and notched its second consecutive week of losses. The broad S&P index was down -0.11%, but blue chips Dow Jones rose by +0.3%.

US mega tech stocks retreated, pushing the NYSE Fang + Index down by more than 1%.

Big tech was weighed down by higher US Treasury yields, which rose after Bill Gross, the one-time bond king, said Treasuries were “overvalued.”

The former CIO of Pacific Investment told Bloomberg that the fair value of the 10-year Treasury yield is about 4.5%, compared with the current level of 4.15%.

Nvidia was down 3.6%.  “Nvidia is down over 13% from its high from just a month ago, and investors are hesitant to buy back in despite this still being an early stage for the AI trade,” said Oanda analyst, Edward Moya.

Among other movers, US listed stocks of Chinese companies Alibaba and JD.com fell 3.5% and 5%, respectively, and News Corp rose 5% on Nasdaq after it beat quarterly profit estimates.

The VIX index, sometimes called the stock market fear index, shed more than 6%, falling below the psychological 15 level.

Back home, the next two weeks are set to be the busiest for half-year results.

Among large caps to report their earnings today include Beach Energy , Bendigo & Adelaide Bank, JB Hi-Fi and Lendlease.


How Aussies are being duped by scammers

The majority of scams reported in Australia in 2023 involved crypto investments, with 78% of all investment scams being linked to cryptos, says data gathered by City Index.

Given the significant increase in the of amounts scams reported, City Index has gathered information around the most popular types of scams being perpetrated:

The Fraudulent Trading Platform is a type of scheme where the scammer develops a fraudulent website or application designed to get the victims to deposit funds to the platform with the promise that they will then have access to a unique investment opportunity. The platforms appear legitimate and very detailed, going as far as imitating price movements and producing artificial gains.

In a Pig Butchering Scam, scammers use various methods to build trust with their victims, such as establishing relationships through social media or dating apps. They gradually introduce the victims to fraudulent investment opportunities, particularly related to cryptocurrencies.

In an Imposter Scam, the scammer impersonates a legitimate business, government agent, or well-known figure to gain access to a user’s systems and personal information for financial gain (e.g. to steal the user’s assets).

Matt Weller, Head of Market Research at City Index offered this advice:

“First and foremost: never share your financial or personal information, such as bank account details or passport information, with unknown or unverified individuals or entities.

“Never click on unsolicited links or share sensitive information on inbound calls; instead, the best practice is to manually visit the appropriate website, or look up the appropriate contact number for the firm that is ostensibly reaching out and initiate contact yourself.”


In other markets

On Friday, gold traded flat to US$1,914.78 an ounce.

Crude oil prices fell 0.3%, with WTI now trading at US$82.93 a barrel.

”When the market gets complacent, sometimes that is when you get a decent pullback, but for now it seems any oil dips will be bought,” said Moya.

Iron Ore 62% fe lifted by +0.75% to $US105.37/ a tonne.

Bitcoin meanwhile was down -0.3% in the last 24 hours to US$29,332.

Former SEC chief, John Reed Stark, believes the current SEC may not approve any of the Bitcoin spot ETFs’ applications currently being submitted.

But he emphasised that there is potential for a significant regulatory shift in the crypto landscape after the 2024 US election.


5 ASX small caps to watch today

Calidus Resources (ASX:CAI)
Review of nearby Blue Bar deposit at the Warrawoona Gold Project in the Pilbara reveals potential for mining to start quickly, and considerable exploration potential. Select intercepts include:38m at 6.36 g/t Au from 1m, and 15m at 10.91g/t Au from 27m.

Starpharma Holdings (ASX:SPL)
Starpharma has negotiated a commercial settlement agreement with Mundipharma in relation to the VivaGel BV product. Under the agreement, Starpharma will receive a US$4.25m cash payment from Mundipharma. Starpharma will also terminate its VivaGel BV licence and supply agreements with Mundipharma, regaining all commercial rights to VivaGel BV, enabling it to sign new marketing arrangements for the product.

Viridis Mining and Minerals (ASX:VMM)
Viridis has secured an additional 3,453 Hectares (34.5km2) of licences from the seller Varginha Parties, representing a 61% increase in land position in the Poços De Caldas Complex in Brazil. Viridis says the acquisition exemplifies Varginha’s commitment to partner with Viridis in becoming the second major ionic rare earth player in the Poços De Caldas Complex.

92 Energy (ASX:92E)
Drilling starts at Gemini uranium discovery in Athabasca Basin, Canada. Drilling aims to expand high-grade intersection of 9.66% U3O8 and extend known mineralisation along trend and test new targets. The 4,000m drilling program has now commenced.

Black Canyon (ASX:BCA)
RC drilling has now been completed across the Balfour Manganese Projects. A ~7000m reverse circulation (RC) drilling program has been successfully completed across 6 key targets within the Balfour Manganese Field that has confirmed widespread manganese mineralisation across a number of the prospects.