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BlackBerry Pops; Yum! Brands Flops; Why Sina is Soaring on Losses

Hot Stock Minute

BlackBerry (BBRY) has been up fractionally this morning following yesterday's gains. Shares shot up 10.5% on news the company may put itself up for sale. But the stock is still down 32% in the past three months on dismal sales of its latest smartphones. The company formerly known as Research in Motion, once had a market cap of $80-billion, but that has now shrunk to less than $6-billion. At this point it's unclear whether the company would be more valuable as a whole or in pieces.

Yum Brands (YUM) has been down almost 4% this morning. The company says same-store sales in China plummeted 13% in July. Most of the drop came from KFC restaurants where fears of bird flu and an earlier food-safety scandal are keeping customers away. But competitors like McDonald's (MCD), Starbucks (SBUX), and Haagen-Dazs have been seizing market share by pushing cold drinks and ice cream during periods of record heat. Excluding this morning's drop, Yum Brands is up 11% so far this year.

Sina (SINA) has been up 6% since reporting a quarterly loss yesterday. Sina said it was minus 17-cents a share for the period, when analysts had expected profits of 12-cents a share. Revenue however topped expectations by more than $20-million coming in at $157-million, and excluding items, the company would have made 21-cents a share. In case you're unfamiliar with Sina, it's a Chinese internet company. Its products include the Weibo mobile app which claims to have 54-million users. Even before you add in this morning's gains, Sina shares are up 42% over the past month. They've climbed 54% over the past year.

Avanir Pharmaceuticals (AVNR) has been up nearly 12% in early trading. Avanir says it has entered into an exclusive deal to help sell Merck's products for type-2 diabetes. The agreement could net Avanir $60-million over the next three years. Shares of Avanir are up 60% this year, even prior to this morning's gains.

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