What’s next for the Reddit stocks trend? After the second “meme stock wave” in June (the first “wave” being in February), top “meme stocks” saw high double-digit percentage declines in July.
Traders who hopped on this second spurt of speculative mania early may be still ahead. But those who got in after it started? Many have either taken the loss, or are sitting on underwater positions, waiting for the rebound.
Will a rebound happen? If you listen to investing minds bearish on the trend, like Michael Burry of “Big Short” fame, they’ll tell you the “meme stock mania” isn’t coming back. Per Burry’s view, as new money dries up, a full-on crash is inevitable with the stocks that this year have been popular with retail traders active online.
On the other hand, Barron’s recently laid out the case why the “meme stock” trade is far from over. Instead of a flash-in-the-pan phenomenon, “meme stock” investing could remain a permanent trading strategy employed by retail traders. In addition, with the specter of another wave of Covid-19 lockdowns, due to the delta variant, we may see a repeat of the conditions that kicked off the resurgence of retail trading in 2020.
If the “meme stocks” trend is here to stay, names popular with the r/WallStreetBets community could change over time. Yet for now, these seven Reddit stocks could have the potential to rebound to their prior highs in the coming months:
- Clean Energy Fuels (NASDAQ:CLNE)
- Clover Health Investments (NASDAQ:CLOV)
- Lucid Motors (NASDAQ:LCID)
- Tilray (NASDAQ:TLRY)
- ContextLogic (NASDAQ:WISH)
- Workhorse Group (NASDAQ:WKHS)
- Exela Technologies (NASDAQ:XELA)
Reddit Stocks: Clean Energy Fuels (CLNE)
“Green Wave” stocks peaked earlier this year, shortly after the inauguration of President Joe Biden (who ran on and is pursuing big changes to America’s energy policy). But CLNE stock managed to capture some excitement again among Reddit traders. It was one of many low-priced stocks that popped higher during the second “meme stock wave” two months back.
At the time, I made the case that while the renewable natural gas (RNG) purveyor’s underlying prospects appeared bright, enthusiasm among traders pushed it up to too high a valuation. However, as it’s made its way back down to around $6.90 per share, down from as much as $14.50 per share in early June? It may be the right time to lock down a position.
Why? Even without the Reddit stocks trend, Clean Energy Fuels may have the makings of a long-term winner. It’s already signed major supply deals with large companies like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) that are looking to go emission-free. As InvestorPlace’s Luke Lango wrote back in June, even if the company holds just 20% of the RNG market by 2030, it could see its sales rise more than ten-fold during that same timeframe.
If the Reddit stocks/”meme stocks” trend remains a thing? Still talked about heavily on r/WallStreetBets, another “wave” of en masse buying may mean another rip is ahead for CLNE stock.
Clover Health Investments (CLOV)
Admittedly, it’s hard to build a bull case for Clover Health stock on its fundamentals. When it went public via a SPAC (special purpose acquisition company) merger at the start of 2021, investors were confident in this “disruptive” insurtech play.
But since its debut, the idea of this company doing with Medicare Advantage plans what Lemonade (NASDAQ:LMND) is pulling off with homeowners and renters insurance has taken a serious hit. First, there’s the much-discussed Department of Justice (DOJ) investigation into its business practices. Then, the rising worries it’ll fail to maintain high levels of revenue growth, much less ever become profitable.
Short-squeeze hopes may have been enough to send it temporarily from high single-digits, to as much as $28.85 per share. Yet as the second “meme stock wave” has faded, CLOV stock is back to square one. That being said, another incredible run may be ahead, if we see a resurgence in Reddit investor enthusiasm.
Short-interest today may be starting to fall considerably, from where it was just a few months back. Yet as it remains one of the most talked-about stocks on r/WallStreetBets, another round of manic mass buying by itself may be enough to give it another pop if the aforementioned “meme stock” trend carries on.
Reddit Stocks: Lucid Motors (LCID)
With its merger deal now closed, former SPAC CCIV stock is now known as LCID stock. But so far, the closing of this deal has failed to re-spark excitement for Lucid shares in the former Churchill Capital IV. Even as it’s one of the most promising early-stage electric vehicle companies out there.
As you likely remember, the mere rumor of it merging with Lucid Motors was enough to send it from its $10 per share offering price, to as much as $64.86 per share. But once rumors became an announced deal? Investors made a mad dash out of the stock, sending it down to between $20 and $30 per share.
Since then, it’s bounced around this trading range. Yet, a combination of the continued Reddit stocks trend, along with company-specific catalysts, could put it back on an upwards trajectory. I’ve been critical of whether Lucid has room to run as its ramps up its operation. Or if the upside from the launch of its flagship Air luxury EV is already priced-in.
LCID stock’s current valuation may overestimate how quickly its scales into an EV maker on par with established rivals like Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA). Especially as competition from incumbent luxury car makers Daimler (OTCMKTS:DMLRY) and BMW (OTCMKTS:BMWYY) heats as well, as both established brands ramp-up their own vehicle electrification efforts. Nevertheless, it still may be one of the top Reddit stocks with rebound potential.
In late 2018 and early 2019, cannabis stocks like Tilray were some of the hottest names around. But as the legalization of marijuana in Canada failed to be as profitable for pot producers as initially anticipated? Canada-based pot stocks fell to rock-bottom prices, a decline exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
So far this year, however, this sector in general, and TLRY stock in particular, have benefited from many factors. First, the “blue wave” election results in the U.S. With the Democratic party retaking both the White House and U.S. Congress, expectations soared that full legalization of pot in America was just around the corner. This caught the eye of Reddit traders, which in turn fueled the second factor, “meme stock madness.”
Related to this was the fact this stock was heavily shorted. As InvestorPlace’s Ian Bezek wrote back in June this was due to merger arbitrageurs going short TLRY stock, and long its merger partner Aphria, to capture the spread before their all-stock deal closed. Together, these factors helped to send shares on a wild-ride. Namely, the sudden pop from around $25.75 per share, to $67 per share, in early February.
Six months later, TLRY stock has failed to repeat this. There’s been uncertainty over U.S. pot legalization. In addition, doubts the Aphria deal will pay off. On top of the meme stock trend cooling off overall, there’s been major downward pressure on shares. But with the possibility of a comeback for the “meme stocks” trend, along with the potential for both its legalization and merger catalysts to eventually pay off, risk/return may be in your favor, as it trades for around $14.75 per share today.
Reddit Stocks: ContextLogic (WISH)
Since going public late last year, investors have played WISH stock many different ways. Shares in e-commerce platform operator ContextLogic initially had a rough start, as investors believed much of its future growth was already reflected in its debut price.
The overall market melt-up helped to send it higher in January and February. But once investors started to get more skittish about tech stock valuations? Like the “meme stocks” and the SPAC stocks, ContextLogic shares experienced a wipeout as well. Of course, news of it providing underwhelming guidance for the June quarter didn’t help, either.
Then, shortly after providing this lukewarm outlook, shares took on a new life as a short-squeeze play. During the above-mentioned “second wave,” Reddit traders spiked it from around $8 per share, to as much as $15 per share. The winding down of this latest frenzy has sent it back to single-digit prices. But a trip back to $15 per share, or even back to $20 or $30 per share, is not only possible. It could happen in the coming months.
If results for the June quarter (to be reported after the close on Aug. 12) beat expectations, this along with a resurgence of trader hype, may be enough to send WISH stock on an incredible run, making it a worthwhile “bottom-fisher’s buy” at today’s prices.
Workhorse Group (WKHS)
It may have lost out to Oshkosh (NYSE:OSK) for the multi-billion dollar U.S. Postal Service (USPS) vehicle contract. But don’t say it’s “game over” for WKHS stock. There are several ways for shares in EV truck maker Workhorse, down over 73% from its highs, to make a recovery.
If the “meme stock” trend continues, this heavily shorted stock (35.8% of float sold short) a bit of positive news may be all it takes to fuel a short-squeeze. Possible developments that could cause this include progress with its bid protest of USPS’s decision to go with Oshkosh. Although, the most recent headlines about this point to long-shot odds of it prevailing.
So, what else could help re-inspire confidence in Workhorse’s future again?
A secondary catalyst may be what saves the day here. As InvestorPlace’s Joseph Nograles detailed on July 30, the company’s HorseFly drone technology is a hidden asset with big potential. News of HorseFly obtaining Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval for its drone could be the kind of headline making news needed to bring speculators back into its stock. In turn, leaving the crowded short-side scrambling to cover their positions in a short-squeeze.
That’s not to say WKHS doesn’t have serious downside risk, if its drone catalyst fails to pan out. As one Seeking Alpha contributor recently opined, scalability issues and high competition could mean further disappointment ahead for its main electric vehicle business. But weighing its prospects of popping against the potential for it to fall back to penny stock prices? There may be merit in entering a small speculative position in it today at around $11.50 per share.
Reddit Stocks: Exela Technologies (XELA)
The “meme stocks” trend has been the main driver for XELA stock lately. Yet a company-specific catalyst (a turnaround) could help extend Exela Technologies’ popularity, and possibly send it to materially higher prices once again.
Sure, its legacy business operations are largely low-margin, low-moat and labor intensive. This may limit its ability to improve its profitability to a level that makes up for the company’s recent shareholder dilution. To really change things, it needs to find success pivoting to more higher-margin business lines, as it’s trying to do with new products like e-signature platform Drysign and virtual mailing and package address service Digital Mailroom.
The jury’s still out on its turnaround attempts. But speculation among traders alone may be enough to send this stock, which briefly went “to the moon” in July (while other “meme stocks” were tumbling), moving again in the right direction.
With around 23.6% of its float sold short, any bit of positive news may be enough to send it soaring once again. Whether or not the overall Reddit stocks trend comes back or not. Exela next announces quarterly results on Aug. 9. If it can demonstrate that its above-mentioned high-margin services are starting to take off? Shares could again as well.
On the date of publication, Thomas Niel did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
Thomas Niel, contributor for InvestorPlace.com, has been writing single-stock analysis for web-based publications since 2016.