Barclay’s bull or Pearce take? Why green hydrogen is the ‘key one to watch’ in 2021


We're excited to announce our weekly segment published in collaboration with Stockhead.

Each Friday, we highlight the key trading themes of the week, along with companies and sectors investors should be keeping their eye on.


In Stockhead's article, our Head of Trading, Trent Primmer, was interviewed to share some trading highlights of the week:



Stockhead opened up the article with an update on BNPL (Buy Now, Pay Later) sector as it has been in focus over the past week with some heat coming out of the market. Accordingly, shares in market-leader Afterpay (ASX:APT) have dipped from highs above $150 to around $110, mirroring similar falls across the space.



“You’ve got the launch of Commonwealth Bank’s in-house BNPL product which they’re rolling out for account holders, and that’s not to be confused with (BNPL competitor) Klarna, which they hold a separate investment in. So it will be an entirely different product — no ongoing fees, and only a $10 missed payment fee per transaction which is small in comparison to APT and Zip Co (ASX:Z1P) fees.”

    - Trent Primmer, Head of Trading


Trent further added that market participants are also wary of potential regulatory changes, which would prevent companies such as Afterpay from forcing their merchant customers to pass on merchant fees. For a company like Afterpay, that’s their bread and butter. So the market right now is starting to reprice these businesses, particularly in light of those lower analyst price targets, 


In terms of momentum plays, Primmer highlighted a recent round of support for gold which has seen prices consolidated above $US1,700 an ounce. However, the precious metal has drifted lower from its August 2020 highs above the $US2,000/oz mark.


With policy support from central banks combined with the US government’s new stimulus package and employment growth underpinned by big infrastructure projects, investors would “expect gold to come off a bit in the short term”, Trent said.

But longer term, he has “no issues” with the view that gold can potentially push back above $US2,000/oz.

"You should always have some gold exposure in your portfolio, irrespective of short-term fluctuations. You’ll never get a perfect entry price into something like gold"

“You should always have some gold exposure in your portfolio, irrespective of short-term fluctuations. You’ll never get a perfect entry price into something like gold,” Primmer says.



It’s been a bullish year for crypto, and Trent said the recent price action could reflect something of a portfolio rotation as institutional investment becomes more common. He added:

"While it’s always volatile, we saw it reach about $AUD80k over the weekend. So with the selloffs in sectors like BNPL, you could be seeing some funds moving from a high-beta play in the tech market to something like crypto. It fits with rationale of investors aiming for higher returns, and speculating on prices of those digital assets like Bitcoin and Ethereum."


Stocks to watch

As part of the Expert Talks segment on Stockhead, Trent gives three new ASX stocks to watch. According to Trent, when it comes to industries where investors should be stepping up their research, one sector stood out this week — green hydrogen



“We’ve seen a continued focus by more companies on clean energy, and from an advisory standpoint we’re seeing a lot more activity there. According to a research from NERA (National Energy Resources Australia), the growth of clean hydrogen will contribute around $11bn of activity to the Australian economy. There’s a lot more talk in the space, and from the ground level, we’re working with several hydrogen and clean energy technology that are currently in the pre-IPO phase as we speak.”

                                 - Trent Primmer, Head of Trading


Within the listed space, Primmer also flagged two companies set to benefit from broader tailwinds behind the sector.Hexagon Energy Materials Limited

Hexagon Energy (ASX: HXG)

According to Trent, Hexagon acquired a project last year which is currently in the pre-feasibility phase, where they’re looking to produce blue hydrogen and store the energy from coal.


Hazer Group logo

Hazer Group (ASX: HZR)

The first pure-play hydrogen stock on the ASX, HZR has developed a “Hazer process” for producing hydrogen from natural gas. When it’s commissioned later this year, the company’s first low emission Commercial Development Project (CDP) in WA is expected to produce 100 tonnes of hydrogen, which could serve as a test case for larger projects.


Global Energy Ventures (GEV) logo

Global Energy Ventures (ASX: GEV)

GEV is a company “riding the green hydrogen wave” by developing shipping options for compressed hydrogen, Primmer said. Still in its R&D phase, the company is developing purpose-build transport vessels capable of shipping around 2,000 tonnes of compressed hydrogen.

According to Trent, with Australia positioning itself as a major Green Hydrogen exporter, GEV are putting themselves in a strong position to benefit from this energy and export transition. More broadly, anything exposed to the hydrogen thematic, I’d be looking at fairly closely. Over the next couple of years, you’re going to get a lot of players in that space considering how large the industry is.



It’s a good idea to get in early on a thematic like this, particularly if you can invest in company’s raising capital for green hydrogen projects in the pre-IPO phase.

If you’re a retail investors looking for exposure, the stocks I mentioned are some of the best-placed for hydrogen exposure.

 - Trent Primmer, Head of Trading


To read the full Stockhead's article, click here.

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