For the better part of the day, the market’s gain was in doubt as uncertainty surrounding James Comey’s testimony to the U.S. Senate on Thursday left most traders unclear about the near-term future. With fewer and fewer unknowns about the matter shedding some light though, the bulls decided they could test the waters after all on Wednesday. The S&P 500 ended the session at 2,433.14, up 0.16%.
Not every stock sidestepped a setback though. Duluth Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:DLTH), Snap Inc (NYSE:SNAP) and Cenovus Energy Inc (USA) (NYSE:CVE) were hit by sellers early and often, albeit for understandable reasons.
Here’s the deal.
Cenovus Energy Inc (USA) (CVE)
It was a rough day for most energy stocks, with Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO) falling 5.2% and Halliburton Company (NYSE:HAL) tumbling to the tune of 3.5%. It was Cenovus Energy that won the race to the bottom on Wednesday though — at least among large-cap energy names — with CVE shares losing 6.1% of their value in response to a steep 4.8% plunge in the price of oil.
The selloff was the result a surprising rise in the amount of oil the U.S. has collectively stockpiled. Analysts were expecting that number to drop for a ninth straight week, this time rolling in by 4.6 million barrels less than last week’s tally. Instead, the number grew by 3.3 million barrels.
That being said, CVE shareholders, along with most other energy investors, were already starting to doubt OPEC would deliver on its promise to curb its oil output through early 2018. Now it seems it may not matter.
Snap Inc (SNAP)
For the second time this week, Snapchat parent company Snap earned a spot on the daily worst-three list, with Wednesdays’ reason more or less being the same as Monday’s reason. That is, another analyst has doubts about the company’s actual prospects.
Nomura’s analysts did the deed today, pointing out the number of global downloads of the Snapchat app were down 22% on a year-over-year basis over the course of the prior two months. That, in turn, will likely contribute to the ongoing slowing in the company’s daily active user roster.
Analyst Anthony DiClemente commented: “We are surprised that a newly public company, supposedly early in its growth cycle, would see near-term results impacted by broader seasonal ad market trends.”
DiClemente is also concerned that roughly 80% of SNAP shares will become free-trading next month, injecting a flood of supply that could work the stock’s price down.
SNAP lost 3.9% of its value today, bringing the week-to-date loss up to 7.2%.
Duluth Holdings Inc (DLTH)
Last but not least, Duluth Holdings — you know it better as Daluth Trading Company — may have entertaining television commercials, but they don’t appear to be cost-effective television commercials. DLTH shares dropped 18.6% following the release of its fiscal first-quarter estimates.
On the surface, the results look sold. Revenue was up 22% last quarter, and the company turned a profit. The penny per share it earned, however, was not only down from the year-ago bottom line of 5 cents, but missed analyst estimates for a profit of 10 cents per share of DLTH by a country mile. Selling expenses were up 39%, driven by heavy advertising and store-opening costs.
As of this writing, James Brumley did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.