• ASX snaps a 7-week losing streak, closing out the week 3.0% higher
  • Materials sector takes a well-deserved win, up 7.5% since Monday morning.
  • Small Capper ImpediMed makes big gains with its fight against cancer.


What a ray of relative sunshine it’s been this week, with the ASX finally putting on some substantial weight since markets opened on Monday morning.

As thoughts turn to weekend plans, and the whole of Melbourne rings to the sound of billions of dollars going up in Formula 1 smoke, the benchmark is set to finish the week higher by around 3.0%.

It’s a welcome change in the wake of more turbulent times, and a sign that investors are once again back on board ahead of the RBA’s next interest rate decision, which is hovering like the Sword of Damocles over our heads until Tuesday, when we’ll learn which way it’s going to fall.

For those of you playing at home, the smart money’s on the RBA hiking rates by a further 0.25% in April to take the cash rate to 3.85%, ahead of a possible pause in May once chocolate prices have become less volatile after the Easter break.


What Made The Week

This week, it was all about Resources, with Goldies the shining star, as the XJR ASX 200 Resources index finishes the week 6.9% higher, and the XGD ASX All Ordinaries Gold index added another 6.2%.

That takes the Goldies’ monthly tally to +20.7% in the wake of surging gold prices as, globally, investors sought refuge from the bank kerfuffles that have been unfolding.

That all contributed to the Materials sector’s 7.5% rise since this time last week, and even Energy stocks – which have been in real trouble in recent weeks – managed to turn in a 1.84% rise.

The Energy sector has been hit very hard since the start of the year, however, and remains down 5.6%.

All eyes will be on the RBA’s interest rate move on Tuesday, before the fallout from the highly-anticipated review into the Reserve Bank begins, now that it’s officially landed on Treasurer Jim “Supernintendo” Chalmers’ desk.

It promises to be excruciatingly dry reading, right up until the part where RBA governor P. Lowe cops a hiding, with some analysts suggesting that his role could be in jeopardy – so we’re likely to see a very nervous Mr Lowe when he addresses the nation on Tuesday to sting us all with another rate rise.

That turbulence, however, is likely to be completely overshadowed by what’s about to unfold in the US, where political ructions are almost guaranteed to dominate the headlines as the wheels come off The Greatest Democracy on Earth™.

That’s entirely down to former US President Donald Trump finally winning a popular vote, after a New York grand jury voting to indict him on a reported 30+ counts of fraud, according to CNN.

With Trump due to hand himself in on Tuesday night (Australian time), things in the US – politically speaking – are going to be very unsettled.

What effect that has on the market remains to be seen, but there’s blood in the water, so don’t say you weren’t warned.



Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks from 27-31 Mar:

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Outside of the sub-penny’s this week, the week’s clear winner was Impedimed (ASX:IPD), which added 75% to its bottom line after announcing that the US National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) has included bioimpedance spectroscopy (BIS) as part of its new version of guidelines.

IPD focuses on non-invasively measuring, monitoring, and managing fluid status and tissue composition using bioimpedance spectroscopy (BIS) medical technology.

The new NCCN guidelines in oncology for survivorship named bioimpedance spectroscopy (BIS) as an objective measurement tool to identify early signs of lymphoedema.

It has also recommended regular screening for all cancer survivors at risk of lymphoedema, in addition to identifying early signs of lymphoedema via symptom assessment, clinical exam, and, if available, bioimpedance spectroscopy.

You can read more about ImpediMed here in ScoPo’s Power Plays, thanks to Stockhead’s in-house legend Nadine McGrath.

Digger Hammer Metals (ASX:HMX) was a bit of a sleeper this week, but stacked on an impressive 62% climb on absolutely no fresh news, earning the company a speeding ticket from the ASX.

However, Hammer was quick to point out that it recently commenced drilling at its Hardway project and completed 12 holes for 1725m on Tuesday 28 th March.

“Logging and analysis was finalised and samples sent to ALS Mt Isa on Thursday 30 th March. Drilling at remaining HMX prospects in the Mount Hope region is anticipated to commence towards the end of April/early May,” the company says… so it looks like speculators are getting hyped at what might be on the way for Hammer.

And last one for today because it’s late and I’m tired, zinc-bromine flow battery producer Redflow (ASX:RFX) added 58% this week, and that’s despite a substantial fall throughout the day today.

Redflow also got a speeding ticket, as the sudden climb in interest didn’t appear to be based on anything revealed to the market – however, news that RFX has inked a strategic relationship deal with a with leading US cleantech integrator, Ameresco to promote the company’s advanced non-lithium energy storage solutions to Ameresco’s customers across North America and Europe is most likely what’s got investors leaping on board.



Here are the least-best performing ASX small cap stocks from 27-31 Mar:

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ASX IPOs this week:

Leeuwin Metals (ASX:LM1)

Listing: 29 March, 2023

IPO: $8.0m at $0.25 per share

Following an oversubscribed IPO raising $8 million at $0.25 a share, Leeuwin Metals has hit the bourse, notably catching the eye of one of the world’s largest globally diversified natural resource players, Glencore.

Drawn to the company’s attractive suite of assets, Glencore has taken a 9.97% cornerstone investment of the shares on issue.

Those assets include Leeuwin’s flagship William Lake nickel sulphide project in the world-famous Thompson nickel belt in Manitoba, Canada, with Glencore and Leeuwin establishing a technical committee to leverage the mining giant’s expertise in Canadian nickel.

At week’s end, LM1 is trading around 2.0% higher.


Patagonia Lithium (ASX:PL3)

Listing: 31 March, 2023

IPO: $8.6m at $0.20 per share

Following an $8.6m initial public offering priced at $0.20 per share, Patagonia made its ASX debut today under the ticker code PL3, bringing its three Argentina lithium brine projects into sharp focus.

Its flagship Formentera project and the Cilon project cover 1,752 hectares and 199 hectares respectively in the Paso Salar, adjacent to Lake Resources’ Paso project, while the Tomas III project in the Incahuasi Salar covers 571.5 hectares of ground adjacent to projects operated by REMsA – the Salta Government’s minerals and energy division, Power Resources and others.

Formentera is located within one of the major prospective basins of the Puna Salar and is prospective for both lithium and boron based on past sampling by vendor Luis Party.

By the close of play, Patagonia has lifted 10% to $0.22 a pop.