Good morning everyone, and welcome to Thursday, 7 December – a day on the calendar that sums up just how godawful the Roman Empire was at times.

As it was on this day in 43BC that noted scholar, philosopher and all-round ancient Big Brain Marcus Tullius Cicero met a grisly end.

A couple of years prior, Julius Caesar was quite famously assassinated, after a bunch of his mates took turns stabbing him in the rotunda – a terribly painful place to get stabbed, by all accounts.

As a result, Rome was politically divided, and Marcus Tullius Cicero threw his weight behind Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus, also known as Octavian – the latter being locked in a battle for control with Mark Antony, a general who had shacked up with Egypt’s answer to Angelina Jolie, Cleopatra.

After giving a number of hugely influential and impassioned speeches to the Senate, urging support for Octavian, you can probably imagine Cicero’s horror when Octavian and Mark Antony suddenly buried the hatchet.

Part of the deal struck between the pair included getting rid of Cicero – a task carried out by a centurion sent by Mark Antony.

Cicero’s head and hands were nailed to rostra in the Roman Forum, where they served as a warning for anyone else who dared to publicly criticise Rome’s leadership.

It’s hard to imagine anything that would dampen political ardour as effectively as turning up somewhere to deliver a few prepared remarks, and finding recognisable chunks of the last guy nailed to the podium.

To help get that mental image out of your mind, the team here at Stockhead has got a large stack of stories, which I can almost 100% guarantee won’t end with someone being nailed to something that they didn’t wish to be nailed to.

That includes Emma Davies’ wrap of what’s happening in the exciting world of director’s trades, and Michael Washbourne’s illuminating look at the life and times of one of Australia’s leading women in mining, Melanie Leighton.

Plus, below you’ll find all the usual digits and data to get your motor rumbling before the market opens today.



Gold: US$2,023.30 (+0.20%)

Silver: US$24.29 (+0.45%)

Nickel (3mth): US$16,058.50/t (–1.71%)

Copper (3mth): US$8,252.95/t (-1.94%)

Oil (WTI): US$72.29 (+0.31%)

Oil (Brent): US$77.23 (+0.30%)

Iron 62pc Fe: US$130.46/t (-0.70%)

AUD/USD: 0.6588 (+0.51%)

Bitcoin: US$43,607.50 (-1.08%)



It was industry veteran Peter Strachan’s latest episode of Rock Talks that caught a slab of interest on the socials yesterday – here’s a link, in case you missed it.




Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks:

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Yesterday’s Small Caps highlights were:

Lanthanein Resources (ASX:LNR) was way out in front of the rest of the market most of the day, sailing on news that the company has inked a farm-in agreement that will see it earn up to a 70% interest in WA’s Lady Grey lithium project.

It’s a strategically important patch of land, some 360km east of Perth, which is literally over the fence from  Covalent Lithium’s fully-operational Earl Grey Mine, which boasts a resource of 189Mt @1.53% Li2O at Mount Holland in the Forrestania Greenstone Belt.

“This transaction positions Lanthanein with a prospective lithium project in one of the most desired jurisdictions for lithium explorers in Western Australia,” Lanthanein technical director Brian Thomas said.

Lanthanein says it is looking to have the drills spinning on site in early 2024.

Desert Metals (ASX:DM1) was also doing well on news that the company has received commitments of $3.75 million through a heavily over-subscribed conditional share placement, with bids reportedly topping $6 million.

The $3.75 million is set to arrive via the issue of approximately 115.4 million fully paid ordinary shares at an issue price of $0.0325 a pop, with the money earmarked to drive drilling and exploration in Côte d’Ivoire and to continue exploration on the company’s Western Australian portfolio.

Earlier in the day, the gainers list included the likes of 88 Energy (ASX:88E), which brought some momentum into the market on the heels of an options prospectus delivered  after market close yesterday.

And Noble Helium (ASX:NHE) made back some of its losses from recent days, after releasing a clarification statement on drilling results from its North Rukwa Helium Project in Tanzania.



Here are the worst performing ASX small cap stocks:

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Tivan (ASX:TVN) – pending the release of an announcement by the Company regarding a proposed capital raising.

Qualitas (ASX:QAL) – trading halt is requested in relation to a proposed capital raising by QRI.

Boss Energy (ASX:BOE) – pending an announcement by the Company in relation to a material acquisition and a capital raising.

Holista CollTech (ASX:HCT) – pending the release of an announcement regarding the outcome of the Federal Court Hearing commencing today in relation to the ASIC’s civil penalty proceedings against the company.

Elevate Uranium (ASX:EL8) – pending the release of an announcement by the Company regarding a proposed capital raising.

Magnis Energy Technologies (ASX:MNS) – to allow the Company the time it needs to prepare a disclosure in relation to iM3NY Credit Facility.

5E Advanced Materials (ASX:5EA) – pending an announcement regarding a proposed material refinancing and capital restructuring transaction.