• ASX to open lower despite gains in New York markets
  • Nvidia rebounds with a +6.75pc surge after recent declines
  • Novo Nordisk plans a US$4.1 billion investment in a new North Carolina plant


The ASX 200 is poised to fall when the market opens on Wednesday despite rallies in New York. At 8am AEST, the ASX200 futures contract was pointing down by -0.4%.

Overnight the S&P 500 rose by +0.39%, the blue chips Dow Jones index was down by -0.76%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq lifted by +1.26%.

US stocks continued their upward trend in June, driven by mega-cap stocks known as the “Magnificent Seven”.

Nvidia led the way, bouncing back by +6.75% after a 13% slump in the last three sessions.

But while many are enthusiastic about the market darling, others have raised questions about its prospects.

“My question for the broader market: If Nvidia’s revenues are $120 billion next year and climbing to $250 billion by 2029 – which is the consensus – where is that money coming from?”, says Adam Button at ForexLive.

Rivian Automotive surged by +53% in post-session following the announcement that Volkswagen plans to invest US$5 billion to establish a joint venture with the electric-vehicle maker.

Carnival Corp jumped +9% after revealing that it was generating significant free cash flow and may consider paying dividends to shareholders down the line.

Meanwhile, US consumer confidence softened in June as concerns about the economic outlook persisted. However, the survey found that US households maintained a positive outlook on the job market and anticipated a decrease in inflation over the coming year.

The data came as Fed Reserve Governor Michelle Bowman said if inflation remains at its current level, further interest rate increases will be considered.

“We are still not yet at the point where it is appropriate to lower the policy rate,” Bowman said overnight.

“Given the risks and uncertainties regarding my economic outlook, I will remain cautious in my approach to considering future changes in the stance of policy.”


Novo Nordisk doubles down on Wegovy and Ozempic

Danish pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk has announced its plans to invest US$4.1 billion in constructing a new manufacturing plant in Clayton, North Carolina.

The initiative aims to meet the soaring demand for its popular weight loss drug Wegovy, diabetes treatment Ozempic, and other injectable therapies.

Over the past year, the demand for Wegovy and Ozempic has consistently exceeded supply, leading to occasional shortages in the US.

This challenge prompted the company to make substantial investments to expand its manufacturing capacity. Novo Nordisk has allocated US$6.8 billion for production investments this year, up from about US$4 billion last year.

The new facility will specialise in filling and packaging syringes and injection pens for these medications, as outlined in a company statement.

Construction of the expansive 1.4 million-square-foot plant has already commenced and is scheduled for completion between 2027 and 2029, according to Novo Nordisk.

Once operational, the site will employ approximately 1,000 workers, supplementing the 2,500 employees already employed across the company’s three existing manufacturing facilities in North Carolina.


Back to markets …

Gold price fell by -0.45% to US$2,320.49 an ounce.

Oil prices were down around -1%, with Brent crude now trading at US$84.85 a barrel.

The benchmark 10-year US Treasury yield ticked higher by 1 basis point (bond prices lower) to 4.25%.

The Aussie dollar lost ground by -0.15% to 66.49 cents.

The iron ore price climbed by +0.5% to US$103.05 a tonne.

Bitcoin meanwhile surged by +3.5% in the last 24 hours to US$62,131, while Ethereum climbed a further +2% to US$3,412.


5 ASX small caps to watch today

The fleet management and transport technology software company provided a market update announcing the signing of its largest Australasian customer.

EROAD is unable to announce the name of the customer as per the terms of the agreement, however EROAD has secured a contract for a minimum of 5,000 units for the customer’s Australian fleet, with an additional renewal for 6,000 units for their New Zealand fleet.

EROAD anticipates further growth in the account over time. The term of the contract is for three years with an option for the customer to extend by a further two years.

Black Cat Syndicate (ASX:BC8)
On May 20, , Black Cat announced a comprehensive funding and development plan for the Myhree/Boundary open pits, which involves processing ore at the Paddington facility. Mineral Mining Services (MMS) will oversee operations, providing funding, personnel, and equipment.

The project aims to produce 52,000 ounces of gold at an average grade of 2.2 grams per ton from Ore Reserves. Activities at Myhree have now begun, including clearing vegetation, constructing haul roads, and setting up the site.

The Ore Reserves estimate is currently being adjusted to align with current gold prices.

PolarX (ASX:PXX)
PolarX’s recent drilling at the Caribou Dome Copper Project has uncovered new zones of copper-rich massive sulphides. These include sections measuring 8.3 meters and 12.65 meters thick, found beneath previous high-grade discoveries from 2021.

All three drill holes from this season have intersected mineralisation, with ongoing drilling aimed at extending the depth and continuity of these zones for future underground mining plans.

Samples will undergo metallurgical testing, and detailed geological data from oriented drill cores will enhance 3D modelling and targeting accuracy for deeper exploration.

Airtasker (ASX:ART)
Airtasker has announced a $6 million media partnership with oOh!media Limited (ASX: OML) to boost its brand visibility across Australia. Through this partnership, Airtasker gains access to oOh!media’s extensive network of over 35,000 sites nationwide, including billboards, street furniture, airports, office towers, and retail centres.

In exchange for this advertising inventory, Airtasker will issue a 2-year $5 million convertible note to oOh!media, carrying a 5.8% coupon rate. At maturity, Airtasker can choose to convert the note and coupon into ordinary shares at a 10% discount to its 30-day average share price, or repay the note and coupon in cash.

Quickstep (ASX:QHL)
Quickstep says it’s restructuring its Structures Business Unit and support functions at its Bankstown facility to optimise operations. This includes transitioning from three shifts six days a week to two shifts five days a week, along with changes in leadership and corporate support.

The restructuring aims to achieve approximately $5 million in annual cost savings. Engineering Development and Services Business Units remain unaffected by these changes as Quickstep continues to invest in technology for operational enhancement.


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