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Good morning everyone, and welcome to 30 May, 2024 – an important day in the history of things that go bang!

That’s because it was on this day in 1626 that what is arguably the largest non-military explosion in history levelled a chunk of Beijing and ushered an estimated 20,000 people into an early excursion to the afterlife.

The explosion took place in the Ming imperial munitions factory known as Wanggongchang, where a vast quantity of gunpowder was stored – just a stone’s throw from some extremely important government buildings, including the Ministry of Justice, as well as a large number of homes and businesses.

The explosion itself was reportedly heard more than 1,000km away – that’s like something exploding in Sydney and the residents of southern Tasmania, Bundaberg and Adelaide wondering “WTF was that?!?” shortly thereafter.

It was, according to researcher Féng Nǎixī, a total horror show at the time, as “bloody organs rained down over the entire city” and an enormous, smoking crater became a new landmark in the centre of town.

Hardly surprising, since the size of the blast has somehow been calculated as “rivalling that of the atomic bomb” that turned Hiroshima to rubble and hastened the end of WWII.

And it only took human beings 320 years to build a bomb big enough to match the ferocity of one of the deadliest man-made explosions the world is likely to ever see.

Luckily for you, you won’t need to be reduced to a fine pink mist in order to make the most of your day on the ASX today. In fact, you’re unlikely to even come close to having to explode – because we’ve done the hard yards to bring you all the info you need to get your day off to a bangin’ start.

Bevis Yeo has an illuminating look at what Mark Caruso-chaired Everest Metals Corporation (ASX:EMC) is up to at the moment,  and as always, I’ve pulled together all the bits and bobs and data and digits below, so you can look super-duper-smart in front of your mates when the market opens this morning.

 

COMMODITY/FOREX/CRYPTO MARKET PRICES

Gold: US$2,343.53 (-0.25%)

Silver: US$32.26 (+0.37%)

Nickel (3mth): US$20,646/t (+2.93%)

Copper (3mth): US$10,460/t (+0.77%)

Zinc: US$3,0389.10/t (+1.29%)

Oil (WTI): US$80.22 (+0.47%)

Oil (Brent): US$84.24 (+0.05%)

Iron 62pc Fe: US$117.68/t (+0.01%)

AUD/USD: 0.6653 (+0.10%)

Bitcoin: US$68,472.80 (+0.22%)

 

WHAT GOT YOU TALKING

Sarah’s had a sit-down with Pursuit Minerals MD and CEO Aaron Revelle, and it’s well worth checking out…

 

 

YESTERDAY’S ASX SMALL CAP LEADERS

Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks:

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

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Yesterday’s Small Cap Winners included:

Winning on Wednesday was Desoto Resources (ASX:DES), soaring early on news that the company is all set to buy a rare earths project in the Northern Territory called Spectrum, where previous drilling pulled up a highlight 6m @ 6.55% total rare earths (TREO) from 248m.

The details are as follows: DeSoto has signed a binding term sheet to acquire 70% of Copperoz’ Spectrum REE project via a two stage minimum exploration spend of $5m over the next 39 months, with a right to acquire up to 100% of the project.

During the first 15 months, DeSoto agrees to spend a minimum of $2m, including a minimum 3500m worth of RC/DD drilling, while Stage 2 requires a minimum $3m expenditure during the following 24 months, and upon completion of a positive feasibility study, DeSoto has an option to buy out the remaining 30%.

Oar Resources (ASX:OAR) has announced the expansion of its Brazilian assets by pegging an additional 650km2 of prospective ground in the states of Rio Grande Do Sul and Goiás. This is an increase of 283% and brings the total Brazilian landholding to 880km2.

OD6 Metals (ASX:OD6) has doubled the resource at its rare earths Splinter Rock project – to 682Mt at 1,338ppm TREO.

“This mineral resource estimate sets OD6 apart from any other clay-hosted rare earth project in Australia, and highlights Splinter Rock to be one of the largest and highest-grade projects globally,” MD Brett Hazelden says.

Cleo Diagnostic’s (ASX:COV) made gains after revealing that its ovarian cancer blood test outperforms the current clinical benchmark, correctly detecting 90% of early-stage cancers compared to only 50% using standard workflows.

Pursuit Minerals (ASX:PUR) was celebrating some early success, with results from Drill Hole 1 at its Maria Magdelena tenement in the Rio Grande Sur project delivering “significant high grade intercepts of lithium brine at shallow depths of ~131m”.

Milk company Fonterra (ASX:FSF)  provided its Q3 business update, announcing profit after tax from continuing operations of $1,013 million, up $20 million on pcp or equivalent to 61c per share. CEO Miles Hurrell says the Foodservice and Consumer channels in particular had a strong third quarter with a lift in earnings compared to the same time last year.

And Critical Resources (ASX:CRR) said 31 new LCT pegmatites were discovered to the east of the Mavis Lake Main Zone, including multiple spodumene-bearing pegmatites. The discoveries were confirmed by the discovery of several new exposed rock formations, extending the known area of spodumene-containing rocks up to 250m in length.

 

YESTERDAY’S ASX SMALL CAP LAGGARDS

Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks:

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

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TRADING HALTS

Frugl Group (ASX:FGL) –  pending an announcement in relation to the completion of a capital raising.

BCAL Diagnostics (ASX:BDX) – pending the company’s response to an ASX Price Query letter, and in relation to a capital raising.