5 big ASX announcements making news this week

There hasn't been a dull moment on the ASX this week.

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It's been another big week of news on the ASX, with many of the market's inhabitants releasing some major announcements.

Looking beyond the market, there's also been plenty of news from central banks.

The Reserve Bank of Australia upped the benchmark interest rate by 0.25% on Tuesday, taking it to 2.85%. Then, on Thursday, the US Federal Reserve hiked rates another 0.75% – leaving the nation's cash rate at 3.75% to 4%. Both hikes were in response to soaring inflation.

Inflation was also the talk of the town on the Aussie bourse this week after an S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) giant posted a quarterly update. Let's get stuck into it.

5 ASX announcements making news this week

Woolworths' earnings disappoint

The Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW) share price slumped yesterday when the supermarket operator posted its September quarter update, detailing a 1.8% increase in group sales.

Its BIG W and Australian business-to-business legs' growth managed to offset a decline in sales at its Australian and New Zealand food businesses. Much of the drop was due to the cycling of COVID-19 lockdowns in the prior comparable period.

Woolworths CEO Brad Banducci also commented:

Inflation continued to accelerate in Q1 … We continue to see early signs of customer purchasing habits changing, but it remains unclear how much of this relates to cost-of-living pressures compared to COVID normalisation.

Another regulatory blow for EML

The share price of EML Payments Ltd (ASX: EML) also suffered this week, plummeting 35% on Monday. Its fall came after the former ASX 200 fintech announced it had agreed to pause the onboarding of new users to its United Kingdom subsidiary, Prepaid Financial Services, amid regulatory concerns.

The issues raised were said to be similar to the (still unresolved) concerns brought about by the Central Bank of Ireland in 2021. They related to the company's compliance with anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing laws.

Nitro catches a winning takeover curveball

After months of courtship and two takeover bids, the Nitro Software Ltd (ASX: NTO) board has finally recommended a potential buyer's offer. However, it wasn't posed by the suitor previously chasing the company.

Canada's Alludo's $2 per share takeover offer was 11% higher than the $1.80 bid Potentia Capital offered on Friday. Potentia has been chasing Nitro since August when it posted its initial $1.58 bid.

Lithium drives IGO's earnings higher

Good news for ASX lithium fans – IGO Ltd (ASX: IGO) announced its lithium business' sales revenue more than doubled quarter-on-quarter to come in a $1.8 billion over the three months ended 30 September.

That helped the company report a 136% increase in after-tax profits, coming in at $253 million, and a 54% jump in underlying earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA), reaching a record $398 million.

Tiny lithium mining share surges 81% amid exploration news

Finally, a win for the little guys. The share price of $110 million lithium explorer Winsome Resources Ltd (ASX: WR1) exploded this week. It has gained 80.8% since the close of trade on Friday, and is currently trading at 85 cents apiece.

The surge followed last week's announcement of positive drilling results at two of the ASX company's Canadian projects.

This week, it provided additional data on numerous drill holes and an investor presentation. The releases seemingly spurred the market's interest in the stock once more.

But that wasn't the end of the drama. The lithium share was halted following an ASX query on Wednesday.

It returned to trade this morning on an update pertaining to its previously released presentation. Additionally, the company responded to the ASX's 'please explain', saying:

With this series of encouraging exploration results being made public, there appears to be a recognition that WR1's market capitalisation is low when compared with many of its peers in the lithium exploration market.

Motley Fool contributor Brooke Cooper has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has positions in and has recommended EML Payments. The Motley Fool Australia has positions in and has recommended EML Payments. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Nitro Software Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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