• The ASX is set to rise after Wall Street boosted by jobs report
  • Dell Technologies surged 21% and hit a new high
  • Wall Street analysts have begun to raise their profit forecasts higher for Q3


Australian shares are set to open higher on Monday after US stocks got a boost from a jobs report on Friday. At 8am AEST, the ASX 200 index futures was pointing up by +0.45%.

On Wall Street, the S&P 500 finished +0.18% higher, blue chips Dow Jones by +0.33%, while tech heavy Nasdaq finished flat.

The August US non-farm payrolls report came in higher at 187,000 in August vs 157,000 in July. Importantly, unemployment was steady at 3.8%.

The report “continues to point to a labour market that is softening but not falling off a cliff, keeping a hike in September off the table in our view,” said Morgan Stanley.

To stock news, Tesla dropped 5% despite unveiling a slicker look for its Model 3 sedan.

Dell Technologies surged 21% and hit a new high after reporting better-than-expected Q2 sales.

Broadcom Inc, a big supplier to Apple, fell 5% after providing a bearish outlook.

Back home, the focus this week will be on the RBA board meeting scheduled for Tuesday.

“We expect the RBA to hold rates this month in light of positive movement in real rates or nominal cash rates minus CPI,” said Emanuel Datt, chief investment officer at Datt Capital.


Wall Street begins to ramp up profit forecasts

After nearly two years of concerns about a recession, growing optimism about the economy is starting to filter down into Wall Street’s expectations for companies’ quarterly results, with analysts growing more upbeat about corporate profit in the months ahead.

Analysts over the past two months have nudged their profit forecasts higher for the first time in two years, according to a FactSet report released Friday.

Wall Street analysts increased their Q3 earnings per share estimates for the 500 companies in the S&P 500 Index, the report said.

But Morningstar’s Bill Peters warned those estimates could fall closer to earnings date, as optimistic projections fade and financial realities set in.

“JPMorgan analysts recently said the collective corporate profit outlook for 2024 was too optimistic. And more bearish analysts have pushed out their recession expectations to next year,” said Peters.


In other markets …

Gold traded flat on Friday US$1,940.16 an ounce.

Oil prices lifted around 1% to their highest level in seven months, with WTI trading now at US$85.98a barrel.

Crude has been rising for the past week on speculations that Saudi Arabia might extend its daily oil production cuts through next month.

Iron Ore 62% fe surged +8% at US$118.19/tonne after China on Friday moved to adjust its mortgage policy to prop up its debt-laden property sector.

The Aussie dollar fell around 0.5% to at US64.50c.

Bitcoin meanwhile climbed 0.4% in the last 24 hours to US$25,955.

Bitwise’s Matt Hougan says the US SEC should approve all the pending proposals for spot Bitcoin ETFs all at once.

“I will say on behalf of investors, the best outcome is likely to line up multiple ETFs and allow them to launch at once,” Hougan told Bloomberg.

“That would create the most competition, the lowest prices, the best products, and be the fairest probably to the asset managers who have worked so hard over 10 years to get a spot-Bitcoin ETF approved.”


5 ASX small caps to watch today

Black Rock Mining (ASX:BKT)
Black Rock has signed an MOU with POSCO for Mahenge Module 2 offtake. Under the deal, POSCO will provide an additional equity investment in BKT of up to US$40m, or a stake of 19.99% in BKT (whichever is lower). The deal will also allow both companies to explore additional opportunities to cooperate further to develop an Inflation Reduction Act compliant anode supply chain.

BPH Energy (ASX:BPH)
BPH announced that its investee company, Cortical Dynamics, has secured FDA 510(k) clearance in the USA for its flagship technology, the Brain Anaesthesia Response Monitor or BARM system version 1. The 510(k) clearance complements existing regulatory approvals in Australia (TGA), Europe (CE) and South Korea (KMFDS). Additionally, Cortical has also appointed Dr Sunil Nagaraj PhD as its new chief scientist.

Matrix Composites & Engineering (ASX:MCE)
Matrix has received a purchase order valued at approximately $13 million from Cosmos Shoji to supply a deepwater riser buoyancy system. The riser buoyancy system, using Matrix’s ultralight carbon syntactic foam technology, will be utilised on a deep sea oceanographic research vessel in Japan carrying out activities across deep sea mining, deep sea research and subsea geological surveys.

ClearVue Technologies (ASX:CPV)
ClearVue has demonstrated its second generation integrated glazing unit (IGU) design can be produced at mass-scale on an unmodified industry-standard production line. The company has confirmed scalability of second generation ClearVue PV IGU solution for manufacturing with glazing manufacturers globally, without the need for production line changes. This provides proof of easy integration to standard production facilities for new and existing license partners.

BCI Minerals (ASX:BCI)
BCI announced that credit approvals for a minimum of $150m of project finance for the Mardie salt project have been received from two commercial bank debt providers. Two leading banks (Australian and international) have provided this credit line with a seven-year tenure. These are in addition to the $650m of credit approvals received from NAIF and EFA in August.


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