The ASX opened 1.1% higher this morning, which honestly feels a bit like a well-intentioned Christmas present that isn’t quite right.
“Thanks, grandma… this is a really lovely jumper you’ve knitted for me, and the extra arm on the front here will definitely come in handy…” – which is the polite way of saying “What I really could have used is a crisp C-note in with the card, you old bag”.
That’s because of how high the US market jumped overnight, thanks to US Fed supremo Jerome Powell who has finally figured out how to push happy news out of his cakehole – which we’ll get to in a minute.
But first, some fantastic research out of Denmark today has dropped this absolute bombshell that is sure to delight every fan of heavy metal.
The music – not, like, actual heavy metals… although there’s no law against being a fan of both at the same time. Whatever floats your boat. Or sinks it. Because it’s heavy.
The study found that bats use the same vocalistaion technique as death metal singers to make their low-frequency calls that help them navigate the dark.
“We identified for the first time what physical structures within the larynx oscillate to make their different vocalizations. For example, bats can make low frequency calls, using their so called ‘false vocal folds’ — like human death metal singers do,” said Coen Elemans, in a news release.
In truly gruesome death metal fashion, the researchers figured this out by extracting the larynxes of several Daubenton’s bats – a small species found in Europe and Asia – and blowing air over the bat’s voice box and watching them vibrate.
This is, obviously, super-gross, but it did reveal just how the bats are able to use their voice boxes in the same way death metal singers (and the chap who earns his living with his hand up the Cookie Monster’s butt on Sesame Street) are able to, as well.
It’s hardly surprising, though. We’ve known about the affinity that some animals have with death metal performances for many years now, as this amazing documentary footage from 12 years ago shows.
But we should point out that this is a vocal technique that takes a lot of dedicated training to perfect, which has claimed more than its fair share of victims over the years, as this plucky little fella found out.
… and when you’ve stopped cackling to yourself over that particular gem, we can take a look at what the markets are up to today.
The ASX has kept its head above water this morning, opening on a 1.1% spike before easing to +0.8% at lunch time.
The jump so far today has largely been driven by Materials (+2.64%) and Utilities (+1.30%), with Consumer Discretionary, Telcos and the Finance nerds all jockeying around 0.74% in a tight race for third.
Being all low-energy and stuff is… Energy, down 0.57%, with Healthcare (-0.34%) on its shoulders trying desperately to get some air.
The only signs of Large Cap social climbing this morning are coming from Block Inc (ASX:SQ2) HQ – but there’s not a whole lot of market news to explain why its climbed 6.89% so far today, other than “because the Nasdaq!”.
Speaking of which…
NOT THE ASX
In the US overnight, there was much rejoicing, for the US Federal Reserve Chief has finally had something nice to say, and brought joy to all the boys and girls.
Actually, it wasn’t all that much that JayPow had to say, but his “the rate hikes are gonna start slowing down” outlook was enough to put some pep in the step of US investors.
The S&P 500 was up by 2.10%, the Dow by 1.32% and players with skin in the tech heavy Nasdaq game were happier than a pup with two peters, up by 3.10%.
Early Bird Eddy Sunarto reports Powell explained that inflation in the US remains too high, but rate hikes must be slowed down because prior rate increases have yet to take their full effect.
“Monetary policy affects the economy and inflation with uncertain lags, and the full effects of our rapid tightening so far are yet to be felt,” he said.
“Thus, it makes sense to moderate the pace of our rate increases as we approach the level of restraint that will be sufficient to bring inflation down.”
The Fed will make its next rates decision on December 13-14.
Meanwhile in Asia, Japan’s Nikkei has jumped a little over 1.0% this morning, because a tweet showing apprentice geishas dealing with a fire drill in Kyoto’s Kamigyo Ward has made everyone super-happy.
— NHK大阪ニュース (@nhk_bknews) November 9, 2022
And no, it doesn’t look anything at all like the start of a grown-up movie. No idea what you’re talking about.
Meanwhile in China, things are looking up following Wall Street’s lead and markets are taking the death of former Chinese leader Jiang Zemin’s death of leukaemia and multiple organ failure at the age of 96 in their stride.
Hong Kong is up 2.55% in early trade, with Shanghai trailing behind at +1.30%.
In crypto, Powell’s comments have help to buoy that market as well, with BTC and ETH both enjoying a solid boost this morning.
However, the market-wide trend of sacking heaps of people is continuing – big player Kraken dumped 1,100 workers last night, and local outfit CoinJar lost 20% of its workforce as well.
You can read more about that, and other crypto goodness, in Rob “Actually, Gregor wrote this one” Badman’s Mooners & Shakers.
ASX SMALL CAP WINNERS
Here are the best performing ASX small cap stocks for December 1 [intraday]:
Swipe or scroll to reveal full table. Click headings to sort:
If the Small Caps winners chart looks weird to you this morning, it’s probably because it’s missing a sight that we’ve become used to over the past few weeks – a company having an absolute +50% belter in early morning trade.
So the winner’s circle is actually looking a little muted this morning, with things back to “normal” – it’s microscopically-small market cap companies climbing higher on ultra-thin turnover almost as far as the eye can see.
Of note, however, is Kinetiko Energy (ASX:KKO), up 16.7% on news of significant results from gas desorption testing from core hole 271-23C achieving gas content of over 11m3/t.
”We have proven and re-proven the productivity of our unique geology. Following the success of core hole 271-23C near Majuba power station, our first borehole in block ER270 has kept our 100% strike rate intact,” Kinetiko CEO, Nick de Blocq, said.
Meanwhile, Singular Health Group’s (ASX:SHG) erratic movements of the past month are continuing. This morning, SHG is up 16% on no fresh news.
And lastly, BPM Minerals (ASX:BPM)is also stacking on some value this morning, with the gold, lead, zinc and nickel digger climbing 14.3% – again, on no news, but given the overall market sentiment for materials this morning, it’s not really all that surprising.
ASX SMALL CAP LOSERS
Here are the most-worst performing ASX small cap stocks for December 2 [intraday]:
Swipe or scroll to reveal full table. Click headings to sort: