With only three trading days left in 2021, the results are in: Yahoo Finance users visited the AMC Entertainment Holdings (AMC) ticker page 194,914,925 times this year — making it the site's top trending ticker of 2021.
Here are the top 10 tickers rounding out the list.
1. AMC Entertainment Holdings (AMC)
Edging out Tesla by a cool 30 million views, it's fitting that AMC would land on top of the heap — and not entirely surprising — in a year where retail traders arose to become an unprecedented driving force in the market. AMC apes are maintaining impressive gains of about 1250% this year, though the stock is down 60% from its record high of $72.62 in June.
2. Tesla (TSLA)
After notching gains of 740% last year, 2021 was a rockier year for the storied EV maker. To begin the year, Tesla quickly surged 25% in January, but then plunged 35%. Investors finally rallied the stock to fresh records in October, topping out at $1,243.49 in November. The company also surpassed $1 trillion in market capitalization, passing Meta Platforms (FB) to become the fifth largest U.S.-listed company.
3. GameStop (GME)
GameStop will likely retain a special place in traders' hearts, as the original retail bet that rallied Reddit crowds — making WallStreetBets and Roaring Kitty household names. Stimulus checks flowing into newly christened Robinhood accounts caught Wall Street and its regulators off guard. Melvin Capital Management crystalized the multi-billion dollar short squeeze with a spectacular failure and margin call, while the resulting congressional hearings became must-see TV (who can forget Roaring Kitty explaining, "I am not a cat"). GameStop is up over 700% as 2021 comes to a close.
4. Apple (AAPL)
The iPhone maker is a perennial stalwart of Yahoo Finance's trending ticker page — maintaining a presence at the top for years before the likes of GameStop and dogecoin (DOGE-USD) exploded into the list this year. It was a dicey year at times for growth stocks, but the near-$3 trillion company keeps forging record highs into year-end. While the company enjoys tailwinds from the iPhone 13 5G replacement cycle and its ever-growing eco-system, Wall Street analysts are already looking to augmented reality and the much-fabled Apple Car (not its official name) as future engines of growth. Apple is up 35% on the year.
Yahoo Finance top 10 trending tickers from May 2019 to May 2021.
5. Nio (NIO)
Investors suffered a torrid trading year, with the stock down 38%. The company suffered a double whammy, as many of the smaller EV companies peaked in the first quarter and subsequently got hammered. Also, Nio joined a laundry list of Chinese companies whose stock price came under pressure by Chinese and U.S. authorities. While Nio has escaped many of the criticisms that plague its Chinese peers, like Alibaba (BABA) and Tencent (TCEHY), investors are grappling with the possibility that more Chinese companies will be delisted in the U.S. and returned to the homeland.
6. Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI)
The peoples' index surged nearly 5,700 points, or over 18% this year, lagging gains of 27% forged by the S&P 500. The top-performing components are a unique mix of growth, value and defensive stocks. Microsoft (MSFT) and Home Depot (HD) are each topping 50%, with Goldman Sachs (GS) is up nearly as much. Meanwhile, UnitedHealth (UNH), Cisco (CSCO) and Chevron (CVX) are each up over 40%. Disney (DIS) is shaping up the biggest laggard, down 14%. Also in the red are Verizon (VZ), Boeing (BA) and Honeywell (HON), among others.
7. Bitcoin (BTC-USD)
After surging nearly 300% in 2020, the largest crypto by market cap is putting in a more subdued, but respectable 2021 — up 65%. But some of its peers are knocking it out of the park. Hex (HEX-USD) rose to prominence on the ethereum network, gaining over 2,000%. But with persistently high gas fees on the network, competitor Solana (SOL-USD) took the prize — surging an eye-watering 9,800% this year. Even ogecoin is sitting on profits of 3,000% (though few investors were buying before Musk drove the coin to prominence).
8. Nvidia Corp. (NVDA)
In a year dominated by chip shortage headlines, Nvidia blew away the competition with a 130% performance that launched it into team mega-cap. It now sports a market capitalization of $750 billion — topping S&P 500 component pears UnitedHealth, JPMorgan (JPM), Visa (V) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ).
9. Alibaba (BABA)
U.S.-listed Chinese companies got hammered this year for a variety of legal and regulatory issues that span the two countries. In December, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission finalized rules to delist companies that don't provide acceptable audit information — capping a multi-year process for issues raised during the Trump administration. In China, investors began the year already nervous after authorities pulled what would have been the largest ever IPO of Ant Financial in 2020. The Chinese government upped the ante in 2021 when it criticized the Didi Global (DIDI) IPO only days after listing, and eventually forced the company on a path to delist in the U.S. and likely go public in Hong Kong. Alibaba stock is down 50% on the year.
10. Amazon (AMZN)
Amazon stock doubled in price early in the pandemic recovery off the lows, but its momentum topped out toward the end of Q2 2020. Since then, it has traded mainly sideways — though it has notched nominal new highs in 2021. The fourth-largest U.S. stock by market cap still draws the attention of investors and regulators alike. Just last week, its cloud unit, Amazon Web Services (AWS), drew regulatory scrutiny from the Federal Trade Commission, adding to the litany of investigations and hearings on its business units.
Jared Blikre is an anchor and reporter focused on the markets on Yahoo Finance Live. Follow him @SPYJared