Local markets have wilted this morning, like a fine serve of spinach atop the poorly-poached eggs I endured at a local cafe while celebrating the King’s birthday.

He wasn’t there at brunch, though. I did invite him, but he never got back to me. Probably just busy oppressing his serfs and setting fire to massive piles of taxpayer money, as kings like to do on their birthdays.

So this morning’s -0.25% effort was just the market’s way of lumping disappointment on disappointment, but that’s what you get when you try to dress up a Tuesday as a Monday and expect no one to notice.

It could, of course, be worse… you could be former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, who is not having a great day, because he died yesterday, aged 86.

A curious, polarising figure, Il Cavaliere (a nickname he reportedly was quite fond of) spent four terms in Italy’s top political job, an achievement that is set to go down as a mere footnote to the way he will be remembered.

Always a pretty flamboyant character, he only really rose to true international fame when lurid tales of sex-themed “bunga bunga” soirees came to light.

The grotty details aren’t important, largely because at the heart of it, it’s all just very gross and ultra slimy – but the short version (for those not in the know) is that when his second marriage broke down, the Italian PM coped with the grief by going full-on Hugh Hefner and trying to put the Prime Ministerial pecker into the whole of Italy.

The Berlusconi estate was regularly the venue for the PM and his mates to entertain a very lengthy stream of young women, who would do stripteases for the guests and, reportedly, touch the dirty old sod’s “intimate parts”.

Front and centre at the parties were claims that Berlusconi particularly enjoyed having these young women dance around a statue of the ancient god of fertility, Priapus.

This is hugely amusing because whenever he was depicted in Greek and Roman art, Priapus was always shown sporting an enormous, semi-erect old fella.

Priapus’ name is also where we get the medical term priapism, which is the hugely unpleasant side effect that can arise from taking erection assistance medications: “a prolonged, rigid erection in the absence of appropriate stimulation”.

The irony of having strippers dance around what amounts to a monument to boner pills was, apparently, lost on the old man, who has – at the ripe old age of 86 – finally ascended to the Great Bunga Bunga Party In The Sky.

 

TO MARKET

Local markets are flat at lunchtime, blowing a big fat raspberry at the ASX 200 index futures, which was pointing up by +0.4% at 8:00am, and is probably feeling pretty sheepish right about now.

The day started with a 0.25% dip, but things have improved somewhat thanks to a market-busting surge from tech stocks. Again.

The InfoTech sector is showing a 3.4% gain at midday, waaaay ahead of the Telcos (+1.15%) and the rest of the broader market.

The ASX All Tech index is cruising along at +2.21% for the day so far. Languishing below the surface, however, are Materials (-1.15%) and Energy (-1.61%), the latter dragged lower by falling crude prices as investors saw through the smoke and mirrors of the recent OPEC+ production cut.

In the US, Goldman Sachs has cut its oil price forecast by nearly 10%, after Russia reported that its oil supply woes have recovered.

Up the top end of town, Paladin Energy (ASX:PDN) has had a significant 11.5% jump on no news.

 

NOT THE ASX

The local market’s dip this morning came despite a pretty solid lead in from US markets overnight, where the S&P 500 and Nasdaq indexes closed 1% and 1.5% higher respectively to their highest levels since April 2022, Earlybird Eddy reports.

US markets are rising on investors’ expectations that The Fed is set to step back from its aggressive tightening campaigns in decades this week, with the FOMC to convene later today for a two-day meeting that will decide on rates.

Wall Street appears to be betting heavily on a pause (at minimum), but it’ll be a couple of days until US Fed chair Jerome Powell fronts the media to (most likely) knock the gloss off even the very best of news with more poorly-chosen words.

It’s something Powell is very good at doing, and I’m sure I’m not alone in my anticipation of his official Kiss of Death on Thursday.

Drilling down into US stocks, Carnival Cruise was the best performer overnight, up by 12.5% as JPMorgan and Bank of America upgraded the cruise operator to “not sinking, and possibly free of gut-crippling bacteria”, but still cautioned against going too hard on the prawns any later than Day 3 of the trip.

Big Tech pushed the overall market performance higher as well, with current market darling Apple closing at its first all time high since January 2022.

“Apple has a roadmap people are comfortable with, it has unbelievable cash flow, and you can’t do better than this incredible business model,” said Wayne Kaufman, chief analyst at Phoenix Financial Services.

In Japan, the Nikkei has surged +1.18% this morning on news that the nation’s largest whaling company Kyodo Senpaku has finally been able to answer one of the major questions that has been driving that country’s whaling for “scientific purposes”.

The company recently announced that, after decades of tedious lab work, scientists have determined that it is possible to sell whale meat for human consumption from a vending machine in Tokyo.

The startling breakthrough has led to plans by Kyodo Senpaku to expand the study further, by installing more whale meat vending machines, presumably on the basis that a larger sample size will be required for the research to be published in The Journal of Unethical Food Murder.

The machines will dispense packages of meat ranging from whale bacon through to slabs of raw whale meat destined to be consumed sashimi-style.

Meanwhile in China, Shanghai markets are down 0.25%, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng is 0.61% lower.

 

ASX SMALL CAP WINNERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for June 13 [intraday]:

Swipe or scroll to reveal full table. Click headings to sort:

Code Company Price % Volume Market Cap
AHI Advanced Health 0.4 371% 1,711,239 $16,762,337
TNT Tesserent Limited 0.1225 150% 61,349,076 $66,354,924
CLE Cyclone Metals 0.0015 50% 1,053,944 $10,264,505
OAU Ora Gold Limited 0.003 50% 246,838 $7,873,850
ERW Errawarra Resources 0.13 49% 288,889 $5,263,848
ALO Alloggio Group 0.23 44% 5,191,220 $18,939,241
AD1 AD1 Holdings Limited 0.007 40% 650,000 $4,112,845
EMC Everest Metals Corp 0.135 35% 2,468,089 $12,943,311
AJQ Armour Energy Ltd 0.004 33% 317,467 $14,764,026
SCU Stemcell United Ltd 0.004 33% 830,977 $3,854,189
AZS Azure Minerals 0.83 33% 14,867,563 $243,897,545
PRMDG Deferred Settlement 0.018 29% 174,266 $1,697,226
ARV Artemis Resources 0.014 27% 9,069,952 $17,269,102
AUH Austchina Holdings 0.005 25% 404,907 $8,311,535
AVW Avira Resources Ltd 0.0025 25% 2,680,000 $4,267,580
RBR RBR Group Ltd 0.0025 25% 8,249,021 $3,236,809
THR Thor Energy PLC 0.005 25% 5,000 $5,840,051
YPB YPB Group Ltd 0.0025 25% 1,838,217 $1,238,498
MQR Marquee Resource Ltd 0.047 24% 36,262,429 $12,433,885
OPA Optima Technology 0.017 21% 563,061 $3,518,788
BNO Bionomics Limited 0.023 21% 983,470 $27,905,973
RCW Rightcrowd 0.018 20% 155,950 $3,947,877
1ST 1St Group Ltd 0.006 20% 1,021,790 $7,084,956
BME Black Mountain Energy 0.024 20% 75,187 $3,664,484
DVL Dorsavi Ltd 0.013 18% 669,553 $6,085,320
WordPress Tables Plugin
 

At the top of the chart today is a curious winner – Advanced Health Intelligence (ASX:AHI), whose main claim to fame is a smartphone app that can be used to to check, track, and accurately assess the user’s body dimensions privately, is up 370%.

AHI is currently in a trading halt until Thursday, while the company preps an announcement in relation to a “capital raising transaction”, and a not-unexpected response to an ASX price query.

Honestly, this one’s a bit of a head-scratcher, but it’ll all make perfect sense later in the week. Maybe.

In second place is cyber-sec and network solutions provider Tesserent (ASX:TNT), up 150% on news that it’s entered into a Scheme Implementation Deed (SID) with Thales Australia that will see the latter acquire 100% of TNT for $0.13 per share in cash.

The price is a massive premium of 165.3% to the last closing price of $0.049 per share and 157.4% to the 1-month volume weighted average price (VWAP) of $0.0505 per share – a solid indication of just how badly Thales wanted to scoop TNT up.

And there’s another takeover making waves this morning, which has seen Allogio (ASX:ALO) jump 43.7% on news that it has finally reached an agreement with Next Capital over the price it’s prepared to accept for 100% of the company.

Negotiations between ALO and Next have been trundling along for quite some time now, and today was the deadline for the Consultation Notice that had allowed the pair to haggle.

The deal has apparently been struck, and Next is now set to buy up 100% of ALO at $0.24 per share in cash.

Errawarra Resources (ASX:ERW) is also up quite a bit, climbing 49.3% this morning on relatively slim volume and nothing in the way of news since the beginning of May.

 

ASX SMALL CAP LOSERS

Here are the most-worst performing ASX small cap stocks for June 13 [intraday]:

Swipe or scroll to reveal full table. Click headings to sort:

Code Company Price % Volume Market Cap
WNR Wingara Ag Ltd 0.023 -36% 316,552 $6,319,530
BOA Boadicea Resources 0.05 -35% 1,010,725 $6,158,315
GCR Golden Cross 0.002 -33% 6,912,670 $3,291,768
VPR Volt Power Group 0.001 -33% 927,224 $16,074,312
CT1 Constellation Tech 0.003 -25% 1,883,333 $5,884,801
MTB Mount Burgess Mining 0.0015 -25% 1,052,617 $1,766,342
PYR Payright Limited 0.003 -25% 322,584 $3,523,541
SCT Scout Security Ltd 0.017 -23% 1,307,680 $5,074,696
S3N Sensore Ltd 0.235 -22% 10,797 $8,449,120
DCX Discovex Res Ltd 0.002 -20% 114,999 $8,256,420
GTG Genetic Technologies 0.002 -20% 60,000 $28,854,145
CAV Carnavale Resources 0.0025 -17% 2,610,019 $8,200,655
TZL TZ Limited 0.02 -17% 116,986 $6,064,995
AM7 Arcadia Minerals 0.11 -15% 124,139 $6,070,726
WCG Webcentral Ltd 0.11 -15% 147,324 $42,786,410
EPM Eclipse Metals 0.011 -15% 311,321 $26,364,777
C6C Copper Mountain 2.23 -15% 278,376 $43,760,946
ADX ADX Energy Ltd 0.006 -14% 7,548,898 $25,271,497
CPT Cipherpoint Limited 0.006 -14% 2,900,000 $8,114,692
RDN Raiden Resources Ltd 0.003 -14% 1,000 $7,193,441
BKT Black Rock Mining 0.125 -14% 3,102,402 $143,251,342
PET Phoslock Env Tec Ltd 0.013 -13% 1,887,738 $9,365,858
HIQ Hitiq Limited 0.02 -13% 684,348 $5,692,878
MIL Millennium Grp Ltd 0.27 -13% 10,000 $14,620,610
DOU Douugh Limited 0.007 -13% 2,836,518 $7,871,187
WordPress Tables Plugin