At midday Monday, stocks were reversing their Friday losses but the gains were not quite up to what the three gave up. The Nasdaq 100 (top tech stocks) was up 2.2%, as the tech sector was the day’s winner so far with a gain of around 2.4%. Consumer cyclicals also traded above 2%, and the energy sector was up about 1.6%, even though crude oil traded about $2 off its premarket top near $73 a barrel. Since our early report, Bitcoin added to its premarket gain and traded above $58,000, while yields on 10-year Treasuries were down a couple of basis points to 1.55%.
As most everyone knows by now, the meme stock phenomenon got off the ground last fall and really took off in late January, when retail investors, primarily from Reddit’s WallStreetBets, turned the tables on short sellers in stocks like GameStop, AMC, BlackBerry and others. Business Insider has an interesting piece on how short sellers have responded over the ensuing months. Some have prospered, but not by doubling down. Passive short sellers have taken the brunt of the punishment, and those investors tend to be large hedge funds.
Shares of Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) were up around 5%, as investors cannot seem to get enough of electric vehicle stocks. In an email to employees, CEO Elon Musk emphasized that the company’s focus this quarter should be on “minimizing cost of deliveries, rather than spending heavily on expedite fees, overtime, and temporary contractors jus so that cars arrive in Q4.” Musk notes that over a six-month period, Tesla won’t have delivered any more cars, but it will have spent a lot more money to do it sooner.
Among stocks trading lower at noon Monday was Progenity Inc. (NASDAQ: PROG). The company continues slumping after last week’s announcement of an at-the-market share offering to raise $90 million. The stock has dropped by about 34% since the announcement.
Vinco Ventures Inc. (NASDAQ: BBIG) also traded down in the noon hour. The company reported quarterly results last week, and the stock is down about 20% since then. Revenue was down 11.5% year over year, gross margin declined by nearly nine percentage points and the loss per share rose to $7.59, compared with a loss of $0.30 per share in the year-ago quarter. Excluding a $494.1 million loss related to a new warrant issue, the loss per share was $0.68.
Camber Energy Inc. (NYSEAMERICAN: CEI) traded down sharply again Monday. The oil and gas producer had no specific news. A short seller report published in early October cut the share price in half in a single day, and it has dropped another 20% since then.
On last look, Tesla stock traded up about 5.4% to $1,140.07, in a 52-week range of $539.49 to $1,243.49. The average daily trading volume is around 24.8 million, and about half the number had already traded on Monday.
Progenity shares traded down about 9.7% as the noon hour ended Monday, at $3.29 in a 52-week range of $0.66 to $7.86. The average daily trading volume is around 79.7 million shares, and 22.9 million had traded already on the day.
Shares of Vinco Ventures were down about 3.5% to $3.15, in a 52-week range of $1.11 to $12.49. The average daily trading volume is nearly 60 million shares. Only about 8.4 million had traded thus far.
Camber Energy shares traded down almost 73%, at $1.27 in a 52-week range of $0.33 to $4.85. The average daily trading volume is about 220 million shares, and 39.5 million had changed hands already.