• ASX 200 benchmark ends up pretty much where we started on Monday, -0.15%.
  • XEC Emerging Companies index climbed 0.23% out of sheer spite and bloody-mindedness.
  • Gold was where it was at, as Besra’s 300% barnstormer quite clearly showed.


It’s 4:00pm-ish Friday arvo, and I can hear the low rumbling sound of millions of Aussie feet hurtling towards the nearest pub, to drink the memory of this mercurial market week away and, perchance, find a willing participant or two with whom to engage in coitus.

Or, if you’re like me (I don’t drink and I work from home) that low rumbling is probably just a reminder that A) cold pizza is not a suitable meal for lunch, and B) You forgot to buy toilet paper this week. Dammit.



There’s no sugar-coating the fact that this week has been a difficult one to navigate – the “will they / won’t they?” narrative around interest rates in the US was neatly tied up when the US Fed lifted rates, despite knowing full well that the relentless procession of rate rises has contributed a significant amount of stress on global markets.

We felt it very clearly here in Australia, where the ASX benchmark retreated fractionally, ending 0.15% on the wrong side of dead flat, while the slightly-more-relevant to the Small Caps pundits XEC Emerging Companies index actually gained a bit of weight, up 0.23%.

In broad terms, it was the bank crisis coupled with a precipitous drop in oil prices that made things hard to predict, which saw ASX-listed banks drop 0.45% (-1.18% today) and the Financials down 0.99% for the week as well.

Strange things were afoot with commodity prices this week, and that saw the Energy sector moving up and down like a bare bum in the back of a Kombi.

It turned out to be a pretty good week for Energy stocks, though – the sector as a whole finished 3.2% higher, by far the best performer since last Friday.

Consumer Discretionary finished 2.03% up, with Telcos on 1.78% in third place.

It was a bad week for Real Estate stocks, though – that sector slumped like a pole-axed junkie, losing an eye-watering 4.3%.

The story of the week, however, was the gold sector, after investors noped their way out of the risky business and beat the well-worn path to safe haven glory, sending the ASX All Ordinaries Gold index 5.56% higher.

Which is where the week’s winner – by an extremely large margin – found both fame and fortune.



Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks from 20 – 24 Mar:

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

Wordpress Table Plugin


That winner was, of course, Besra Gold (ASX:BEZ) which timed its run immaculately well with an announcement on Tuesday about a US$300m offtake deal with major shareholder Quantum Metal Recovery, securing funding to bring its 3Moz Bau gold project into production.

It landed at precisely the right moment for a market that was desperately looking to get into gold, without having to worry about carrying it home, because that stuff is seriously dense.

And so, off Besra went – up 55.0% Tuesday, up 26.7% on Wednesday – a day when goldies were being sold off because everyone thought the need for a safe haven was over.

When the gold rush kicked off again yesterday, Besra was still the market darling, stacking on another 49%, which brings us to today.

Besra nudged the $0.17 mark a few times, before profit taking dropped the price and it looked (at lunch time) like Besra’s run was over.

It wasn’t. From +3.3% at lunch time to close of play today, Besra has risen as high as +48% – $0.185 a pop – before easing to $0.16 at today’s close.

That’s an 18.5% jump, which put Besra’s gains at a lovely round 300.00% for the week. Mazel Tov.

Next on the chart is the Tolkein-themed Mithril Resources (ASX:MTH) – it did technically double in price this week, but that’s from next-to-nothing to double-next-to-nothing ($0.001 to $0.002, to be precise), on 0.000 news since its “reverse acquisition” announcement at the start of the month.

Sleeper of the Week award goes to Carbon Revolution (ASX:CBR), makers of carbon fibre wheels for fine automobiles and… other things with wheels. Probably.

It has climbed 77% since this time last week, including a very healthy 27.6% rise today alone, which is doubly impressive since it has managed to do it without uttering a breath of news in the past 11 days.



Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks from 20 – 24 Mar:

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

Wordpress Table Plugin


ASX IPOs this week:

It was All Quiet on the Western Front this week, because this is clearly not the best environment to be dragging new kids into the mix. But we’ll have a few new playthings soon, I promise.

Just as soon as we figure out how to get rid of the wolves that are prowling around the market’s front door.