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Why Wayfair, Universal Display, and iQiyi Jumped Today

Dan Caplinger, The Motley Fool

The stock market had another good session on Friday, with major indexes posting solid gains to finish the week. Investors focused largely on discussions about the next steps in trade talks between the U.S. and China, becoming more optimistic that the two sides will come to a favorable resolution of the disputes that have plagued the global economy for much of the past year. In addition, good news from several much-followed stocks fostered positive sentiment. Wayfair (NYSE: W), Universal Display (NASDAQ: OLED), and iQiyi (NASDAQ: IQ) were among the top performers. Here's why they did so well.

Wayfair furnishes good results

Shares of Wayfair soared 28% after the e-commerce furniture and home goods retailer announced its fourth-quarter financial results. Wayfair said that sales jumped 41% during the period, finishing just below the $2 billion mark and completing a year that saw a 45% rise in direct net revenue. The company still hasn't reached profitability and had negative free cash flow, but CEO Niraj Shah was still pleased the performance, noting a 38% rise in active customers in the direct retail business during 2018. Eventually, Wayfair will have to make money, but shareholders want the company focusing on sales and market share before it worries about the bottom line.

Rising stock charts superimposed over digital map of the world
Rising stock charts superimposed over digital map of the world

Image source: Getty Images.

Universal Display sees a brighter 2019

Universal Display saw its stock jump 23% following the release of its fourth-quarter financial report. The maker of organic light-emitting diode technology saw mixed results in the quarter, with accounting changes having significant impacts on its revenue and net income figures. Yet Universal Display said that it expects strong sales growth in 2019, reassuring those who'd feared that poor results from key players in the smartphone industry might weigh on performance. With a higher dividend and expectations for renewed growth, Universal Display shareholders couldn't have gotten better news.

iQiyi keeps its growth up

Finally, shares of iQiyi finished higher by almost 22%. The Chinese online entertainment specialist said that revenue climbed 55% during the fourth quarter of 2018 compared to the year-earlier period, with total subscribers rising to 87.4 million, up by more than 36.5 million in just the past 12 months. iQiyi continued to lose money, but adoption rates of its premium entertainment offering hit 98.5%, showing the appetite among Chinese consumers for high-quality content. With the company squarely focused on producing its own original entertainment, iQiyi seems to be following the same trajectory that has helped similar companies overseas achieve great success.

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Dan Caplinger has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Universal Display and Wayfair. The Motley Fool recommends iQiyi. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.