November Winners: ASX investors were spooked by Omicron, but wooed by Julimar, hydrogen and the metaverse
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For the second month in a row the ASX was hit by a major sell-off in the last few days of the month and it took the bourse from what was then a 0.5% gain to a 1.56% loss in November.
Just when we thought we were out of the worst of COVID, with some states and nations reopening borders and our COVID vaccine tally growing another ~3.6 million to reach 87% of over-16s fully vaxxed, the Omicron variant emerged and sent markets and borders into retreat again.
But ironically the ASX is still up 10% this year and the S&P500 up nearly 25% in spite of everything that’s happened this year.
The stock market in 2021 has survived:
– Inflation at 30 year highs
– Evergrande debt crisis
– Omicron variant
– Jack tweeting his final goodbye
— Genevieve Roch-Decter, CFA (@GRDecter) November 29, 2021
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You might recall last month we poked fun at Facebook for its rebranding.
But after the initial announcement, investors looked more closely at stocks in the so-called metaverse.
The company arguably offering ASX investors the greatest exposure, Vection Tech (ASX:VR1), came in at number four on the ASX November winners list as it unveiled its FrameS Metaverse.
It will enable organisations to autonomously build immersive metaverses, dynamic 3D worlds where people can participate in meetings from anywhere in the world.
But coming in first was another stock with exposure to virtual reality in Indoor Skydive (ASX:IDZ), which gained 229%.
During the month it appointed a new director in defence industry executive Mark Smethurst and opened its fourth FREAK entertainment centre in the Macquarie shopping centre in Sydney. It offers VR games, including escape rooms.
Taking the silver medal was Environmental Clean Technologies (ASX:ECT), gaining 212% on the ASX in November.
The company has a number of clean energy technologies under development in lignite, hydrogen and waste conversion. But it is the company’s hydrogen refinery in Victoria that has excited investors the most.
In bronze was DevEx Resources (ASX:DEV), gaining 126%. The biggest news out of the company was diamond drilling results at its nickel-copper Sovereign project.
Arguably the bigger catalyst for growth was Chalice Mining’s (ASX:CHN) maiden resource at Julimar, being a discovery DevEx and dozens of explorers are trying to replicate.
There is one other Julimar nearology play in November’s ASX winners list in Caspin Resources (ASX:CPN) and its point of difference to other plays is having Chalice itself as a shareholder.
One late entrant to the ASX November winners list is biotech stock Biotron (ASX:BIT). No stranger to big gains in recent years, it surged last week when results of its pre-clinical study showed BIT225 was effective, albeit in mice.
The other biotech to gain was Argenica Therapeutics (ASX:AGN), which early in the month demonstrated positive efficacy results from a preclinical study of lead drug, ARG-007.
In an animal study, the results showed that ARG-007 very significantly reduced the volume of brain tissue death for HIE (hypoxic-ischaemic encephalopathy) compared to the control group which received a saline injection instead of ARG-007.
And three years after its wound dressing drug failed a Phase II clinical trial – leading to a 97% share price plunge – Factor Therapeutics (ASX:FTT) finally found a new life as a calcium limestone explorer and has been renamed Dominion Minerals (ASX:DLM).