After yesterday’s pre-Chrimbo spend-up, SPI Futures are down 66 points (-0.38%) this morning, threatening to wipe out yesterday’s 41-point gain.

That’s on the back of some good/bad, depends-on-your-worldview news out of the US that data confirmed the Fed’s assessment that the US people can handle “a little more” tightening. Here’s the scoreboard, red bits mean losses, green bits … well, you don’t need to know what green bits mean:

Dow Jones 1.05%
NASDAQ 2.18%
S&P 500 1.45%
STOXX 600 0.97%
FTSE 0.4%
DAX 1.3%
CAC 1.0%

Worse good/not good news came in the form of lower than expected initial jobless claims out of the US, which came in lower (healthier) than expected. Big tech took a hit, with Tesla copping the worst (-8.88%), but Microsoft and Apple also crumbled as chipmaker Micron posted a fairly morbid outlook.

US 10-year bond yield rose 0.2bps, the 2-year yield fell 6.5bps. And the Aussie fell 0.57% to 66.64c.

On commodities, the only winners were … lead and aluminium. That can’t be good.

In fact, copper is now down 15% for the year, so if you’re buying into the hype about it being an unmissable buy over the next 10 years, sorry to hear that.

And it’s been quite a ride in 2022 for FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried. He spent most of it as a multiple times billionaire living in a decadant orgy palace in the Bahamas, then suddenly found himself carting around other prisoners’ poos in a grimy cell.

Now, he’s back home living with his mum and dad, after they used their home in Palo Alto to secure a record US$250 million bail for their favourite son. He’ll be under “strict supervision” (probs 1hr screen time a day), will wear an electronic monitoring bracelet, and undertake mandatory mental health counselling.

His eight various wire fraud and money laundering charges carry a maximum penalty of 115 years in prison, where inmates play an entirely different style of collaborative, team-based role play.

Bitcoiners seem to love these turns of unfortunate events in SBF’s life. It’s up 0.20% over the past 24 hours, and the crypo market as a whole has had a 0.30% rise overnight, but still struggling to hold its head above the US$800 billion mark.

MUST READ: ‘WHAT… HAPPENED’? A look back on crypto’s ‘biggest year yet’ (for fraud, hacks, implosions…)

5 ASX Small Caps to watch today

Respiri (ASX:RSH) has begun enrolling patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) on the wheezo RPM program. The program will run under the supervision of Arkansas Heart Hospital and was secured with Respiri’s RPM partner Access Telehealth under its full-service premium model that includes patient engagement and remote monitoring using their cloud-based platform, Remotli. Reimbursement claims and revenues will be processed within the next few months, with Respiri to receive recurring revenues per patient per month in addition to the device sales.

Syrah Resources (ASX:SYR) has updated the market on its December 2021 announcements regarding its offtake agreement with Tesla to supply natural graphite active anode material (AAM) from its production facility in Vidalia, USA. SYR says the condition relating to agreement on final specifications of AAM by 31 December 2022 has been fulfilled. Syrah is aiming for start of production of the 11.25ktpa AAM Vidalia facility in the September 2023 quarter. Tesla has also exercised its option to offtake an additional 17ktpa AAM from Vidalia at a fixed price and for an initial term of no less than four years, pending Vidalia’s production capacity expansion to 45ktpa AAM.

Omega Oil & Gas (ASX:OMA) has agreed to place $4.9 million new fully paid ordinary shares to strategic investor and resource exploration company, Tri-Star E&P at an issue price of $0.20c. That’s a decent premium to OMA’s current share price of 0.17c. Tri-Star has been an operator, non-operator and investor in major exploration, appraisal, development and production projects for more than 40 years across Australia and the Permian Basin in Texas, and is “a long term investor focussed on unlocking new plays with strong funding capability”, according to its Country Manager Australia Andrew Hackwood. “Omega have assembled a suite of high quality assets and are well placed to execute the Canyon drilling program in 2023,” he said.

Starpharma Holdings (ASX:SPL) has received a $7.1m research and development tax incentive refund under the Australian Federal Government’s R&D Tax Incentive scheme. SPL is a developer of new pharmaceutical and medical products based on proprietary polymers called dendrimers, with programs for DEP drug delivery, respiratory viruses and VivaGel.The tax refund relates to Starpharma’s Australian and international R&D expenses from the 2022 financial year.

Superloop (ASX:SLC) has bought 52,000 subscribers from MyRepublic’s NBN subscriber base, for $250 per migrated subscriber. The agreement is effective immediately with completion expected shortly thereafter. The bulk of MyRepublic customers are expected to migrate to the Superloop brand during February 2023. The final purchase price will be adjusted to reflect the exact number of subscribers who will migrate, but total consideration would cost SLC approximately $13,000,000. The agreement does not include any assets or liabilities of the MyRepublic legal entity. “This purchase is strongly accretive for shareholders as it provides growth at scale at a very attractive multiple of approximately 2x EBITDA (post synergy),” Superloop CEO Paul Tyler said.