Materials was the star of the day, with some massive performances by Fortescue Metals (ASX:FMG), which closed 9.85 per cent higher, BHP, which finished 4.61 per cent higher, and Core Lithium (ASX:CXO), which is currently trading at an all-time high and closed 11.5 per cent higher.
In other news, the price of oil has risen as investors are optimistic about the easing of COVID restrictions in China. The West Texas Intermediate futures have risen towards $US90 a barrel after surging by almost 3 per cent on Friday.
The Dow Jones futures are pointing to a fall of 80 points.
The S&P 500 futures are pointing to a fall of 13.75 points.
The Nasdaq futures are pointing to a fall of 74 points.
The SPI futures are pointing to a fall of 14 points when the market next opens.
Best and worst performers
The best-performing sector was Materials, up 3.37 per cent. The worst-performing sector was Industrials, down 2.28 per cent.
The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Champion Iron (ASX:CIA), closing 12.92 per cent higher at $6.03. It was followed by shares in Core Lithium (ASX:CXO) and Fortescue Metals Group (ASX:FMG).
The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Elders (ASX:ELD), closing 22.94 per cent lower at $10.21. It was followed by shares in IPH (ASX:IPH) and Ramelius Resources (ASX:RMS).
So far in today’s trading, Asian equities have been mostly mixed.
Greater China markets have been on an extending rally with property stocks surging in Hong Kong.
It has been lacklustre elsewhere however, with the Nikkei easing and the Korean market flat.
So far, Japan’s Nikkei has lost 0.80 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng has gained 1.99 per cent and China’s Shanghai Composite is flat.
Warrego Energy (ASX:WGO) advised that it has entered into a Scheme Implementation Deed with Beach Energy (ASX:BPT), under which Beach will acquire all the issued shares in Warrego for $0.20 cash per share, plus any net proceeds received from the sale of Warrego’s Spanish assets, by way of a members’ scheme of arrangement. This represents a 36 per cent premium to Warrego’s 1-month VWAP to 9 November 2022. The Scheme is subject to approval by Warrego shareholders. Commenting on the proposed acquisition, Beach CEO Morné Engelbrecht said: “We look forward to completing the transaction with Warrego. Warrego’s exciting Perth Basin gas acreage represents an additional development opportunity for new gas supply beyond Beach’s Waitsia Stage 2 project and our gas exploration drilling which will soon commence.” Shares have closed 16.67 per cent higher at $0.21.
Immutep (ASX:IMM; NASDAQ:IMMP) announced that it has received a $986,286 cash rebate from the Australian Federal Government’s R&D tax incentive program. The cash rebate is provided in respect of expenditure incurred on eligible R&D activities conducted in the 2021 fiscal year, mainly related to the company’s TACTI-002 clinical study using its lead compound eftilagimod alpha. Immutep will apply the non-dilutive funding towards furthering its current active clinical trial programs. The expected cash reach of the company extends into first half of calendar year 2024. Shares have closed flat at $0.315.
Antisense Therapeutics (ASX:ANP; FSE:AWY) announced that it has initiated the process with Contract Research Organisation (CRO) Pharmaron to conduct a nine-month chronic monkey toxicology study to support the advancement of the ATL1102 program in the US for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) or any other clinical application of ATL1102. Dr Charmaine Gittleson, the Chair of Antisense Therapeutics, said: “The commencement of a chronic toxicology study that aligns with FDA requirements is an important advancement for the ATL1102 program and a key value adding catalyst. Importantly it provides the Company the prospect of sharing with FDA a compelling data package encompassing the clinical results from the placebo controlled six month study along with the outcome of the nine-month toxicology study. The Company expects that this investment in the chronic toxicology study should remove a key hurdle to lifting the partial clinical hold and in initiating clinical DMD studies under an IND and in turn provides more certainty on the path forward in the US.” Shares have closed 5 per cent higher at $0.105.
Alpha HPA (ASX:A4N) has announced the expansion of its strategic relationship with Orica, the key chemical element counterparty to its HPA First Project currently under development in Queensland. Alpha and Orica have executed a subscription agreement whereby Orica will acquire a 5 per cent equity interest in the company. In response, Alpha’s Managing Director stated, “Orica has a detailed understanding of our process technology, the advanced nature of our marketing activities, and a strong appreciation of our commitment to building a sustainable business to help decarbonise critical future-facing industries.” Shares have closed 10.58 per cent higher at $0.575.
Invictus Energy (ASX:IVZ) provided a drilling update on their project in Zimbabwe’s Cabora Bassa Basin. The update shows that the total depth of 3,618m measured depth has been reached, and additional zones of elevated gas and fluorescence. Commenting on the news, Managing Director Scott Macmillan, stated, “The evidence of hydrocarbon charge throughout the Upper Angwa reservoir intervals provides further validation of our subsurface model and the presence of a conventional working hydrocarbon system in the Cabora Bassa Basin.” Shares are trading 39.58 per cent higher at $0.335.
Commodities and the dollar
Gold is trading at US$1759.32 an ounce.
Iron ore is 4.7 per cent higher at US$92.25 a tonne.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 1.86 per cent.
Light crude is trading $0.61 lower at US$87.55 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 66.70 US cents.
Image & Story Credit: finnewsnetwork.com.au