ASX falls after lithium stocks crumble: ASX closes 0.07% lower

Market Reports

by Peter Milios

Sectors were mostly mixed today, and the S&P/ASX 200 was 0.07 per cent or 4.70 points lower at 7141.6 at the closing bell. Healthcare slightly edged Information Technology, as their big players all finished higher. CSL (ASX:CSL) closed 1.61 per cent higher at $4.61, whilst Fisher & Paykel Healthcare Corporation (ASX:FPH) and Ramsay Health Care (ASX:RHC) finished 2.2 per cent and 1.33 per cent higher respectively.

In other news, lithium stocks have fallen sharply today. Whilst there is no obvious reason for this, it may be because investors cashed out after yesterday’s huge gains. Lake Resources (ASX:LKE) is down 7.59 per cent at $1.09, whilst Core Lithium (ASX:CXO) is down 15.28 per cent, after an almost 12 per cent increase yesterday.


The Dow Jones futures are pointing to a rise of 109 points.
The S&P 500 futures are pointing to a rise of 16.25 points.
The Nasdaq futures are pointing to a rise of 69.25 points.
The SPI futures are pointing to a fall of 2 points when the market next opens.

Best and worst performers

The best-performing sector was Information Technology, up 1.68 per cent. The worst-performing sector was Real Estate Investment Trusts, down 1.47 per cent.

The best-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Imugene (ASX:IMU), closing 7.69 per cent higher at $0.21. It was followed by shares in Incitec Pivot (ASX:IPL) and Elders (ASX:ELD).

The worst-performing stock in the S&P/ASX 200 was Core Lithium (ASX:CXO), closing 15.82 per cent lower at $1.57. It was followed by shares in Allkem (ASX:AKE) and Sayona Mining (ASX:SYA).

Asian news

Asian equities are mostly higher Tuesday. Greater China markets extended their rebound with tech stocks up big in Hong Kong. Semiconductors are underpinning a rally in Taiwan after Berkshire disclosed a stake in TSMC. Japanese and Korean markets are flat.

So far, Japan's Nikkei has gained 0.18 per cent, Hong Kong's Hang Seng has gained 3.75 per cent and China's Shanghai Composite has gained 1.38 per cent.

Company news

Warrego Resources (ASX:WGO) have released a Perth Basin Strategy & Proposed Merger Update. Strike Energy (ASX:STX) recognises there is a competing proposal for Warrego Energy and that Warrego has entered into a Scheme Implementation Deed with Beach Energy, however Strike believes that its proposal represents a superior result for Warrego shareholders. Some reasons why include: a higher value per share for Warrego shareholders as at the close of trading after Beach’s initial offer (14 November 2022) and a retained ownership in a uniquely positioned energy business with a dominant portfolio of assets in the exciting and emerging Perth Basin. Shares closed 2.38 per cent higher at $0.215.

MSL Solutions (ASX:MSL) has announced that it has entered into a scheme Implementation Agreement with Plutus Bidco, an entity controlled by Pemba Capital Partners, which has agreed to acquire 100 per cent of the issued share capital of MSL at $0.295 per share by way of a scheme of arrangement. The total cash consideration of $0.295 per share payable by Plutus Bidco implies an equity value of $119 million. The deal was at a 85 per cent premium to MSL Solutions’ last close and about 80 per cent to the one-month VWAP. MSL Solutions’ board is backing the deal, subject to it not receiving a higher offer. Shares closed 55.56 per cent higher at $0.28.

Lycaon Resources (ASX:LYN) announced that it has entered into a conditional binding Heads of Agreement to acquire the Stansmore REE carbonatite project, in the West Arunta region of Western Australia. Recent discoveries by WA1 Resources and Encounter Resources have demonstrated the potential for the West Arunta region to host significant rare earth elements type mineralisation systems. In response, Lycaon’s Technical Director, Thomas Langley, stated: “the historical drilling by BHP in 1982 intersected intrusives and strong carbonate alteration that may be related to REE-carbonatite mineralisation.” Shares closed 32.26 per cent higher at $0.41.

Encounter Resources’ Managing Director Will Robinson will be presenting on this Friday’s Sharecafe Hidden Gems webinar, register here to attend.

Victory Goldfields (ASX:1VG) reported their initial results from the recently completed 118 holes AC drill program at the company’s North Stanmore REE project. The results confirm high grade ionic clay REE extension. In response, Victory’s Executive Director Brendan Clark commented: “Victory’s board has great confidence in these results and has fast tracked a further 10,000m of drilling across the project in search of further REE mineralisation and to infill the previous drilling program.” Shares closed 30.56 per cent higher at $0.235.

Antisense Therapeutics (ASX:ANP; FSE:AWY) advised that following his significant tenure as the Company's Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Mark Diamond has advised that he is retiring as CEO. Mark will continue his responsibilities as CEO until a successor is appointed. ANP Chair, Dr Charmaine Gittleson, commented: “On behalf of the ANP Board, I regretfully acknowledge Mark’s resignation and understand his desire to pursue other opportunities after more than twenty years in the role. Mark has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the Company for the benefit of shareholders, patients and his team. He became CEO at a challenging time for the Australian biotech industry when few successful biotechnology companies existed. Under his dedication and guidance, the Company successfully transformed from a small start-up, with a licence to a second generation antisense molecule, to an ASX listed biotech with a promising lead product.” Shares closed 9.52 per cent higher at $0.115.

Melbana Energy (ASX:MAY) reported that an initial two well appraisal program in Block 9 PSC is to be drilled starting in Q1 2023. The purpose is to assess oil qualities and reservoir characteristics of the three independent formations containing moveable hydrocarbons encountered drilling Alameda-1. In response to the news, Melbana Energy’s Executive Chairman, Andrew Purcell, commented, “We’ll be testing all three of the reservoirs where we previously encountered strong oil shows whilst drilling Alameda-1 and we’re preparing for production tests to be run for extended periods, should they be warranted. We’re looking forward to commencing this exciting work in the new year and to hopefully beginning the next chapter of our journey in Cuba as an oil producer. Shares closed 14.29 per cent lower at $0.048.

Breaker Resources (ASX: BRB) announced that it has now completed the divestment of its remaining stake in the Manna Lithium joint venture including the transfer of ownership of the two surrounding Exploration licences to Global Lithium Resources Limited (ASX:GL1). Breaker has today banked a further $60 million in cash taking its receipts from the Manna divestment to a total of $87.9 million or $0.27 per share over the past 11 months. The Board of Breaker continues its focus on finding the best way to commercialise the Lake Roe Gold Project and its demonstrable open pit and underground mining potential. The recent recovery in the A$ gold price further enhances the outcomes here. Shares closed 1.69 per cent higher at $0.29.

Commodities and the dollar

Gold is trading at US$1773.09 an ounce.
Iron ore is 3.3 per cent higher at US$95.30 a tonne.
Iron ore futures are pointing to a rise of 0.83 per cent.
Light crude is trading $0.38 lower at US$84.78 a barrel.
One Australian dollar is buying 67.05 US cents.

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