JC Penney, Fitbit to Get Dumped From Russell 1000 Index

After markets close Friday, the FTSE Russell indexes will be reconstituted and some significant changes appear to be in store. J.C. Penney Co. Inc. (NYSE: JCP), for example, is virtually certain to be dropped from the Russell 1000 Index, as are Fitbit Inc. (NYSE: FIT), Groupon Inc. (NASDAQ: GRPN) and Yelp Inc. (NYSE: YELP).

The Russell 1000 is a market cap-weighted index comprising the 1,000 companies with market caps above about $3.4 billion. J.C. Penney’s market cap as of Thursday’s close is just $1.4 billion, making its demotion to the Russell 2000 a virtual lock. The same is true of Fitbit with a market cap of $1.2 billion, Groupon with a market cap of $1.9 billion and Yelp with a market cap of $2.5 billion.

For passive investors, the change is a big deal. They will be forced to buy or sell these and other demoted or promoted stocks, depending on the stock’s performance over the past 12 months.

In addition to retail stocks, most of which have had a tough year, and formerly hot tech stocks, energy stocks are poised to take a real beating. Names like Noble Corp. (NYSE: NE), Ensco PLC (NYSE: ESV) and Diamond Offshore Drilling Inc. (NYSE: DO) have all tumbled in the past year and are equally sure to fall out of the Russell 1000.

One new entrant into the index is Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (NASDAQ: AMD). The chipmaker’s market cap was nearly $14 billion at Thursday’s close. Shares are up about 450% over the past two years and nearly 175% in the past 12 months alone. And that’s after a common stock offering last September that added more than 100 million shares to the company’s outstanding stock total.

Share prices typically don’t move much on the day of Russell rebalancing, but volumes typically jump. Last year’s volume on the New York Stock Exchange was double the trading average, but that was also the day of the Brexit announcement.

J.C. Penney stock traded up about 2.1% in early Friday, at $4.48 in a 52-week range of $4.17 to $11.30.

Fitbit shares traded up about 1.0%, at $5.14 in a 52-week range of $4.90 to $17.18.

Shares of Groupon were last seen at $3.29, in a 52-week range of $2.90 to $5.94.

Yelp shares were down about 0.2% to $29.90, in a 52-week range of $26.35 to $43.41.

AMD stock traded down about 1.0%, at $14.24 in a 52-week range of $4.65 to $15.55.