• ASX 200 set to open higher after Wall Street gains
  • Traders eagerly await Nvidia’s quarterly results later tonight
  • The 56-year-old Red Lobster files for bankruptcy


The ASX 200 is poised to open higher on Wednesday after modest rises on Wall Street. At 8am AEST, the ASX200 futures contract was pointing up by +0.3%.

Overnight, the S&P 500 rose by +0.25% to its all-time high, the blue chips Dow Jones index was up by +0.17%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq lifted by +0.22% to yet another new record.

Traders are eagerly awaiting Nvidia’s quarterly results later tonight, a highly anticipated report seen as a major catalyst that could drive a stock market rally.

The bar is set pretty high for Nvidia. Its shares have already jumped over 90% this year after tripling in 2023.

Analysts expect Nvidia to report around 240% of revenue growth for Q3 to US$24.6bn. Most of this (more than US$21 billion) is expected to come from sales of advanced chips the company is selling to Google, OpenAI, Microsoft, Meta etc,

Meanwhile, Tesla popped almost +7% after the company unveiled new details about its plan to develop electric semi trucks.

“We’re building a factory in Nevada that is being ramped in 2026 for customer deliveries, and ramping to eventual target capacity to 50,000 units a year,” said Tesla exec, Dan Priestley.

Trump Media & Technology, the company behind Truth Social, dropped -9% after reporting a Q1 operating loss of US$327.6 million, way more than the US$210k loss they had last year.

To cryptos, Etherium surged another 4% after yesterday’s 17% rally amid rumours that the US SEC might approve ether ETFs this week. Trading platforms like Coinbase and Robinhood also saw a boost to their share prices from the buzz.

Closer to home, the Reserve Bank of NZ (RBNZ) is set to hand down its rates decision later today. The central bank is expected to keep the benchmark rate steady at 5.50%.


Red Lobster is bankrupt

The Orlando-based seafood chain, famous for its shrimps, filed for Chapter 11 protection in the US yesterday and announced it was closing about 99 locations.

The bankruptcy comes after a 2014 sale left Red Lobster with a chronic cash drain.

Back in 2014, Darden Group spun off Red Lobster to a private equity firm and its current owner, Thai Union. To make the deal happen, the firm sold most of Red Lobster’s property and then leased it back at high rents.

According to the bankruptcy filing, most of those rents were above market rates.

The ensuing cash drain might have been manageable in normal times, but then the pandemic happened in 2020 which put Red Lobster in a deeper hole.

On top of that, some bad decisions, like all-you-can-eat snow crab and shrimp promotions, left the restaurant with US$1 billion in debt and less than $30 million in cash.

Red Lobster has been operating for about 56 years.


In other markets …

Gold price fell by -0.2% to US$2,421.25 an ounce.

Oil prices eased by -1.5%, with Brent crude now trading at US$82.50 a barrel.

The benchmark 10-year US Treasury yield slipped by 3 basis points (bond prices higher) to 4.42%.

The Aussie dollar was flat at 66.70 cents.

The iron ore price rallied more by +2% to US$120.95 a tonne.

Bitcoin meanwhile climbed by +0.25% in the last 24 hours to US$69,970.


5 ASX small caps to watch today

Classic Minerals (ASX:CLZ)
The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety has granted a 21-year mining lease over CLZ’s Lady Ada and Lady Magdalene gold projects at Forrestania. The lease is located over the Forrestania Tenements being purchased by Classic from Reed Exploration. The lease covers an area of 1,803.81 hectares.

Fin Resources (ASX:FIN)
Eight diamond drill holes have now been successfully completed at White Bear Prospect in James Bay, Canada. Diamond drilling successfully intersected the White Bear pegmatite, which has been confirmed as being spodumene bearing, based on geological observations and LIBS1 data

Boab Metals (ASX:BML)
Boab announced new test results for its Sorby Hills Project in Western Australia. These results improve the January 2023 feasibility study and will be used in the current FEED study. The latest tests on drill core samples show that lead recovery at the Norton Deposit has gone up from 78% to 83%. Silver recovery remains at 78%, and the concentrate quality has improved from 56.9% to 59.5% lead.

Sovereign Metals (ASX:SVM)
Sovereign has started a Pilot Mining and Land Rehabilitation Program at its Kasiya Rutile-Graphite Project in Malawi. This will help the company figure out the best ways to dig, refill, and restore the land. The program will show local communities how land can be used for farming after mining. The results will also speed up the upcoming Definitive Feasibility Study.

Maximus Resources (ASX:MXR)
Drilling has commenced at the Lefroy Lithium Project with MXR’s partner KOMIR after getting approval. The drilling will help the company to understand how much spodumene is in the ground. MXR has reported some promising results, like 6 meters of spodumene-rich rock with a concentration of 1.11% lithium oxide.


At Stockhead we tell it like it is. While Classic Minerals,Fin Resources and Sovereign Metals are Stockhead advertisers, they did not sponsor this article.