Midday Meme Stock Report for 1/4: AMC, Canoo, Ocugen, Reliance Global

U.S. stock markets have been unable to hold on to early gains. The Nasdaq Composite could not hold onto a small gain for even five minutes of trading and recently traded down about 1.5% for the day. The blue-chippers on the Dow Jones industrial average were holding on to a decent gain thanks to the energy (up 3.8%) and financial (up 2.9%) sectors.

Crude oil has gained more than a dollar since Monday’s settlement and traded up about 1.5% at around $77.25. Nearly every oil producer, large or small, was trading higher in the noon hour Tuesday. Bitcoin added to its early morning gains and traded up 1.8% at around $46,900. Demand for 10-year Treasury notes was slipping and yields were rising, up about five basis points from Monday’s close to trade at around 1.68%. The two-year note traded down by about one basis point.

Equities on our meme stock watch list mostly traded lower at noon on Tuesday. Not a big surprise, given that most are growth stocks and none of those is doing especially well with 10-year Treasury yields getting close to 1.70% and could be overvalued to begin with.

COVID-19 vaccine maker Ocugen Inc. (NASDAQ: OCGN) was following big brothers like Pfizer and Novovax lower Tuesday. The reason could be that even though the Omicron variant is raging right now, investors are voting with their wallets that vaccines are not going to be in high demand for much longer. And Ocugen’s vaccine is not yet approved for U.S. use, and that is dragging the stock down as well.

AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. (NYSE: AMC) CEO Adam Aron tweeted out Monday that he would like to use the company’s current high valuation to refinance AMC’s borrowing to push out maturities and lower interest rates. Because the company’s fundamentals had little to do with its massive share price growth last year it follows that rejiggering debt will have little or nothing to do with AMC’s business going forward.

Canoo Inc. (NASDAQ: GOEV) was Tuesday’s big loser among electric vehicle stocks not named Tesla. Actually, Tesla traded down about 3.3% in the noon hour, while Canoo traded down more than 5%. With Tesla, Tuesday’s decline following the prior day’s 13% rise may involve some profit-taking. For Canoo and most other EV makers, volatility is part of the appeal.

A new entrant in the meme stock brigade may be insurance broker Reliance Global Group Inc. (NASDAQ: RELI). Some retail investors see GameStop-like short-squeeze possibilities in this stock. One member of the r/Shortsqueeze subreddit wrote Tuesday morning: “$RELI – Now at 120% SHORT INTEREST verified by S3 and as high as 240% borrow cost. These are $GME-like numbers. Long from $7.00.” The stock closed at $7.58 on Monday and had added more than 10%.

As the noon hour ended Tuesday, Ocugen stock traded down about 6.4% to $4.42, in a 52-week range of $1.40 to $18.77. The average daily trading volume is almost 34 million shares, and just 6.6 million have traded thus far on the day.

AMC shares traded down about 5.6%, at $25.05 in a 52-week range of $1.91 to $72.62. The average daily trading volume is around 42 million shares, and more than 25 million had already traded.

Shares of Canoo traded down about 6.0%, at $7.63 in a 52-week range of $5.75 to $20.00. The average daily trading volume is around 5.5 million shares, and about 2.2 million had traded thus far.

Reliance Global shares traded up almost 16% to $8.80, in a 52-week range of $1.83 to $9.95. The average daily trading volume is around 3.7 million shares, and more than 16 million shares had changed hands.

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