A rare positive week comes from the strength of the energy and retail sector


Like the appearance of a rare gem, a Friday rally in the Australian market led it to a paltry weekly gain of just 0.5%.

It was a tight thing though, with Friday’s 1.1% rise of 76.8 points on the ASX 200 at 7182.7 points doing most of the heavy lifting for the week.

It wasn’t hard to see where the rise came from with the energy sector up 2.3% on a rising oil price.

Among the winners was Woodside (ASX:WPL) which saw its shares jump 3.6% to $30.08, while shares of player Cooper Basin Beach Energy (ASX:BPT) jumped 3.8% at $1.64.

While inflation could be bad news for some companies, rising energy stock prices have been a panacea as accusations of being ‘old economy’ companies melt away like morning mist in the face of strong request after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Retailers follow strong lead overseas

Consumer discretionary stocks also benefited from a strong performance overseas, with the sector rising 2% after ABS figures showed retail sales jumped 0.9% in April. .

Price increases by the big four banks also pushed the financials sector up 1.1%.

Companies riding the renewed interest in retailers include City Chic Collective (ASX:CCX), with shares up nearly 8% at $2.44, Accent Group (ASX:AX1) up 4.2% to $1.38, JB Hi-Fi (ASX:JBH) up 2.5% to $46.42, Super Retail Group (ASX:SUL) up 2.1% to 9.41 $ and Premier Investments (ASX:PMV) shares rose 1.8% to $22.29.

Along with the stronger sectors, there were a few company-specific moves – the main one being a sharp rise in Pointsbet (ASX:PBH) share price, up 16.4% to $2.85.

Pointsbet rallies strong as Appen shares are crushed

Pointsbet shares were buoyed by a quarterly update that showed strong growth in its sports betting business, with revenue up 54% to nearly $1.4 billion, due to a 37% increase in Australian revenue to $579.4 million and a 70% increase in US revenue to $818.6. million.

The biggest loser of the day was Appen (ASX:APX) stock, which fell 20.9% to $6.54 after major Canadian suitor Telus unexpectedly pulled out of talks over a proposal buyout of $1.2 billion.

Small Cap Stock Action

The Small Ords index fell 1.13% this week to close at 3014.8 points.

May 2022 ASX 200 Small Ords Chart
ASX 200 vs small orders

The small cap companies that made headlines this week were:

Open Agriculture (ASX: WOA)

This week, Wide Open Agriculture unveiled what could be its biggest milestone yet after Monde Nissin Australia agreed to buy up to 60% of its protein Buntine made from regeneratively grown lupine over two years.

Monde owns the Nudie, Black Swan and Peckish brands, among others, and plans to use Wide Open’s protein Buntine as a primary ingredient in a variety of plant-based foods and beverages it is developing.

Wide Open chief executive Dr Ben Cole said Monde is the company’s preferred partner to market its protein Buntine, which is made from Australian sweet lupine that has been regeneratively grown in WA’s Wheatbelt. .

The company followed this major milestone by announcing that it had signed an agreement to market its carbon-neutral oat milk in Taiwan.

DKSH Taiwan has agreed to distribute, market and sell Wide Open’s oat milk, which is sold under its Dirty Clean Food brand.

Wide Open predicts that DKSH Taiwan will generate approximately $650,000 from its annual oat milk sales in the region.

Thomson Resources (ASX: TMZ)

A participation agreement between Thomson Resources and White Rock Mineral regarding the Mt Carrington gold and silver base metal project has been amended.

The deal for the Queensland-based project has a two-step acquisition approach, which will give Thomson 70% equity and capture polymetallic value from the deposits, which lie in the New England Fold Belt.

Thomson’s capital expenditure will focus on exploration and development at Mt Carrington, with a priority of integrating known gold-silver-zinc-copper mineralization into its broader New England Fold Belt mineral resources where she aims to build more than 100 Moz of money equivalent.

Under the first stage gain, Thomson can acquire 51% of the project by spending $5 million on exploration and development. Stage two will give Thomson an additional 19% by spending an additional $2 million.

BPH Energy (ASX:BPH)

BPH Energy emerged from a trading suspension this week with news that it was heading into the hydrogen space through a strategic investment in US-based Clean Hydrogen Technologies Corporation.

The company plans to invest $800,000 in Clean Hydrogen, which will give it an 8% stake. In addition, the company Advent, 36% owned by BPH, will obtain 2% of Clean Hydrogen for 200,000 USD.

BPH and Advent also have the right to purchase an additional USD 1 million of Clean Hydrogen shares on the same terms by the end of December, which would give BPH a 16% stake and Advent 4%.

Clean Hydrogen has developed a technology that produces hydrogen from methane without burning it or generating carbon dioxide emissions.

BPH says the technology can be deployed at scale and within existing supply chains at costs comparable to current processes.

Aston Minerals (ASX: ASO)

Metallurgical testing of ore samples taken from the Boomerang target at Aston Minerals’ Edleston project in Canada has generated a marketable nickel concentrate.

The company has undertaken early stage flotation testing on a 30kg sample from the Barwell prospect, within the larger Boomerang target.

This showed that the ore lends itself to conventional processing techniques.

Aston chief executive Dale Ginn said recoveries during testing were comparable to those from other nickel sulphide deposits around the world.

Open circuit evaluation produced a concentrate grading 11.29% nickel, 0.37% cobalt, 24% sulphur, 38.2% iron and 8.2% magnesium.

Resources for Investigators (ASX: IVR)

Advanced explorer Investigator Resources has discovered more potential near its Parisian silver project in South Australia.

The Company’s drilling on the Apollo prospect at 4 km has exposed the highest grade silver intersection outside the main Paris deposit.

The best results were 7 m at 700 g/t silver from 150 m and 4 m at 1170 g/t silver.

The investigator’s managing director, Andrew McIlwain, said the analyzes demonstrate the “significant potential” for the discovery of additional silver resources near Paris.

These analyzes were accelerated after pXRF readings returned significant silver readings in drill core samples.

Vintage Energy (ASX: VEN)

First gas from the Vali field 50% owned by Vintage Energy in the Cooper Basin is expected from late September to mid-October.

Construction of the operation is expected to be complete in September, with all wells expected to be online in October, followed by first gas.

Vintage forecasts cash flow from initial Vali gas sales in the first half of fiscal 2023.

Meanwhile, Vintage and its joint venture partners Metgasco and Bridgeport have secured ministerial approval to acquire Beach Energy’s 15% interest in PRL211, which is adjacent to the Vali field and hosts the gas discovery of Odin.

Ownership of PRL is now the same as the Vali field – Vintage owns 50% and is the operator, while Metgasco and Bridgeport each retain 25% each.

Odin will have a well completion in the same upcoming campaign for the Vali field.

Galileo Mining (ASX: GAL)

The discovery of platinum-group elements, including the valuable mineral rhodium from Galileo Mining’s Norseman project, has boosted its stock price by more than 50% this week.

Drilling on the Callisto target intersected 33m at 2.05/g 4E (1.64g/t palladium, 0.28g/t platinum, 0.09g/t gold and 0.05g/t rhodium).

Rhodium is considered the rarest of the six PGEs and also attracts the highest price.

Exit drilling is due to begin next week and Galileo will also target rhodium in this campaign.

“Based on the six drill holes completed so far at Callisto, we anticipate more sulphide intersections in the upcoming drill program and hope that an increase in sulphide grade will be accompanied by an increase in metal content,” said Galileo chief executive Brad Underwood.

The week ahead

After a relatively quiet week, we expect many more announcements in the coming week, with the big local announcement being the release of GDP figures.

In addition to the significant compression in price-earnings ratios on many stocks, the risks of further major falls in stock prices center on declining economic growth numbers here and in the United States.

While most analysts expect Australian numbers to be reasonably healthy around the 1% mark for the March quarter, any signs of slowing growth will not go down well with equity markets.

Other national releases to watch include the government’s balance of payments and financial statistics for the March quarter, construction approvals, private sector credit, consumer sentiment, manufacturing, housing prices, retail, construction and new car sales.

Abroad, major releases in the United States include employment data, house prices, chain store sales, new car sales, mortgage applications and unemployment figures.

However, the very big offshore announcement could come from China where a series of large-scale shutdowns of major cities, including Shanghai and Beijing, are expected to show up in manufacturing and services figures, as well as measures of business activity. factories.

While steep declines are expected, a better picture of how China is coping with severe supply chain constraints could easily move markets back and forth.

The best actions of the week


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