Midday Meme Stock Report for 12/22: AMC, American Virtual Cloud, Tesla, TMC

As the noon hour rolled around Wednesday, stocks had already dipped from their morning highs. This morning’s report that third-quarter gross domestic product grew by 2.3% and the GDP deflator rose by 6% were both higher than economists’ forecast and likely weighed on shares. Consumer cyclical stocks had posted the largest gain for the day, up 1.7%, and all 11 sectors were still trading in the green.

Crude oil gained about $1 to trade above $72 a share, while Bitcoin continued to languish just under $49,000. The yield on 10-year Treasury notes dropped by one basis point, while the two-year note was unchanged since early in the morning.

The stock making the most noise Wednesday morning was Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA). Shares traded up as much as 10% earlier in the morning and remained (barely) above the $1,000 per share level. CEO Elon Musk’s comment that he has “sold enough” of his shares in the company to make good on his promise to sell 10% of his holdings lit a fire under the stock early in the session. Even an announced investigation by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) had little impact on investors.

Earlier this month, the NHTSA was reported to have begun looking into a complaint that Tesla had, in December of last year, updated its Passenger Play software to enable game playing in the vehicles while they were moving. Previously, the cars had to be parked in order for the games to work. All model year 2017 through model year 2022 cars are affected.

As we noted when the first report of the investigation was revealed, removing the game-playing capability should require no more than another software update. Tesla will not have to recall the vehicles and the cost to make the change should be negligible. Tesla’s decision not to do so until (or if) forced must follow from some other consideration.

Although American Virtual Cloud Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: AVCT) had given back about a third of its premarket gain, the shares were still up by around 20%. As we noted in our morning report, short sellers hold little of the company’s stock, so the sharp run-up in the share price over the past several days is likely down to its appeal to retail investors.

AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. (NYSE: AMC) was sinking again. Perhaps, as WallStreetBets member derprondo comments, “Every time an AMC bull cries, a bear gets their wings.” A lot of new flying bears out there now.

TMC the metals company Inc. (NASDAQ: TMC) added more than 10% in Wednesday trading. The company had no news, but it may be getting some help from Rio Tinto’s morning announcement that the mining giant is spending more than $850 million to acquire a lithium mining operation in Argentina. TMC is currently testing an undersea mining project to recover battery-grade metal nodules from the seafloor.

As the noon hour ended on Wednesday, Tesla stock traded up about 6.2% to $955.93, in a 52-week range of $539.49 to $1.243.49. The average daily trading volume is around 26.3 million shares, and more than 21 million had changed hands thus far on Wednesday.

American Virtual Cloud stock traded up about 22%, at $2.27 in a 52-week range of $0.84 to $9.62. The average daily trading volume is about 12 million shares, and more than 44 million had already traded on the day.

Shares of AMC traded down about 6.7% to $28.30, in a 52-week range of $1.91 to $72.62. The average daily trading volume is about 44.4 million shares, and about 24.4 million had traded already.

Shares of TMC traded up nearly 13%, at $2.25 in a 52-week range of $1.79 to $15.39. The average daily trading volume is about 4.8 million shares, and almost 2 million have traded.

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