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WA Index

Issue 221 | November 2023

Welcome to the 221st edition of the Deloitte WA Index, a monthly review of Western Australian stocks and indices

The aggregate market capitalisation of Western Australian listed companies declined significantly during October – falling 2.6% to close at $347.7 billion. All tracked indices experienced weakness this month, with the All Ordinaries falling below 7,000 points for the first time since October 2022, as tensions in the Middle East saw an increase in market volatility.

Download the list of WA’s top 100 listed companies, as of 31 October 2023, explore the sections below, and if you do not currently receive our WA Index, please register to be added to our distribution list.

Commodity review

During October, commodity pricing exhibited mixed trends across key markets. For the third month in a row, energy commodities experienced the most notable surges with LNG being the standout performer for the period, up 21%.

Similar to the prior month, metals faced slowed movement amid weakening demand due to uncertainties around China’s stimulus measures; nickel, lead and aluminium slowed, with lithium carbonate experiencing another significant decrease, this month falling 10%.

In October 2023, coal declined by 16%, falling from US$156/T to US$131/T as a result of ongoing Western restrictions on imports of Russian energy (including coal) and broader global disruption to energy supplies. Further slowing movement are high prices for carbon allowances, which impact profit margins for coal plants across the EU.

LNG rose 21% in October 2023 to US$18/MMBtu. This increase is largely attributed to increased global demand for LNG as a result of the rising crude oil prices. European countries have ramped up LNG imports since the shutdown of Russian pipelines, and in addition, import capacity will continue to grow rapidly with new regasification terminals opening in Northern Europe, China, India and the Philippines. 

Lithium carbonate fell 10% to US$24/KG as a result of Chinese lithium carbonate prices drifting lower amid ongoing bearish sentiment and limited demand. Weak electric vehicle sales have led to high stockpiles and a decrease in the lithium prices. The overcapacity in the energy storage sector has seen eroded margins, adversely affecting prices.

Brent Crude Oil prices fell 8% during the month, falling from US$96 to US$89 per barrel, driven by supply disruption concerns due to the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East, continuing a period of notable price volatility. The broader inflationary environment and tightening monetary policy also contribute to slowing demand.

In October, the price of gold exhibited a remarkable increase, surging from $1,871 to $1,997 per ounce, which marked a substantial 7% rise within a single month. This surge in the value of gold was primarily driven by growing economic uncertainty as commodities like oil have slowed, particularly in response to the ongoing civil and political unrest in the Middle East. Investors turned to gold as a safe-haven asset in response to these uncertainties, seeking a store of value and a hedge against market volatility.

In October, uranium recorded a 6% increase, climbing from $70 to $74 USD per pound. This upward trajectory marked an extension of the sustained price growth seen throughout 2023. The surge in uranium prices is closely linked to a global shift towards cleaner and more sustainable energy sources, as countries look to reduce carbon emissions and transition to low-emission power generation. A coup in major exporter Niger further drove up prices as Europe’s supply was threatened.

Performance of WA Index and Global indices

WA Index movement

Top 20 performers of the month

De Grey Mining Ltd (ASX:DEG) experienced the most significant increase in market capitalisation in the top 20 WA listed companies during the month. The company’s market capitalisation rose 23.5%, closing at $2,150m. As part of a two-tranche placement to raise $300 million in capital, October saw the issuance of $256 million in shares are part of tranche 1 of this scheme. This placement will provide significant balance sheet strength and flexibility to progress activities to support the Project execution schedule whilst de-risking future development.

Gold Road Resources Limited (ASX:GOR) saw a market capitalisation increase of 17.1% during the month. Gold Road Resources committed to subscribing in the two-tranche placement by De Grey Mining (ASX:DEG), representing 19.9% of tranche two shares offered. Whilst this announcement created some volatility, a consistent upward trend remained throughout the month. Record production of 88,668 ounces at Gruyere at $1,682/oz (AISC) additionally contributed to the strong performance.

APM Human Services International Limited (ASX:APM) closed out the month with a 13.3% increase in market capitalisation, increasing to $1,917m. APM is a global health and workplace services provider, serving to help people with injury, illness or disability or hardship find employment, improve their health and wellbeing and participate in their community. The announcement of former WA Premier Mark McGowan joining the firm’s advisory panel generated interest.

The top Deloitte WA Index Movers and Shakers in September

Dacian Gold Limited (ASX: DCN) market value increased by 166% in October, following an announcement by Genesis Minerals Limited proposing a takeover offer to acquire the remaining 20% of Dacian Gold. The most recent of Genesis’ multiple takeover bids announced in mid-October offered shareholders an equivalent of $0.235 in Genesis shares, which rose to $0.283 per share by month end. This offer was a significant mark up from the initial offer of $0.102 Genesis shares.

Wildcat Resources Limited (ASX: WC8) saw a substantial increase in market capitalization, which marked a 147% surge from its September valuation. Positive drill results from the Leia Pegmatite ore body and a significant headline drill result of 85 meters at 1.5% Lithium Oxide raised market sentiment. Mid-October also saw the announcement of Mineral Resources, in partnership with Resource Capital Fund (RCF) and Global Advanced Metals (GAM) acquiring an 18% stake in Wildcat.

Tietto Resources Limited (ASX: TIE) market capitalization increased by $267 million during October, which marks a 73% rise from prior month. An acquisition offer made by Zhaojin Capital (Hong Kong), with a proposal to buy 100% of Tietto at $0.58 per share, representing a 36% premium, drove a strong close the month. Tietto has been on a steady growth trajectory throughout October, driven by their announcement of a nine-year Life of Mine Plan for the Abujar Gold Mine in Cote d'Ivoire, following the commencement of commercial production in June this year.

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