One troubled meme stock finally has some good news to report. Yesterday, Meta Materials (NASDAQ:MMAT) announced that Nasdaq has granted a 180-day extension for the company to regain compliance. That gives Meta until March 18, 2024 for MMAT stock to trade at no less than $1 per share for 10 consecutive days.
Shares of MMAT are up today on the news, but this company still has a long way to go before reaching the $1 mark. Meta Materials currently trades at about 20 cents per share and hasn’t seen any real growth in months. No matter how hard retail investors work to drive hype for the stock, any superficial momentum quickly fades. This doesn’t bode well for Meta’s chances of regaining compliance.
Why is it so hard for this troubled meme stock to pull out of its slump? Let’s take a closer look.
What’s Happening With MMAT Stock?
Anyone who has been following Meta Materials since last year knows it has a history of controversy. The company made headlines in December 2022 when the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) halted trading of its preferred shares — which traded as MMTLP — ahead of a planned spinoff. This decision sparked a massive outcry from investors alleging foul play. Since then, MMAT stock has raced to the bottom, falling more than 80% since the beginning of 2023.
Granted, this micro-cap penny stock has never traded at very high levels. But this downward spiral has kept it well below $1 for months. Shares haven’t even been close to Nasdaq’s minimum bid price since February 2023 and there’s nothing to suggest MMAT will suddenly rally and stay there.
Indeed, this summer has brought more bad news than good for Meta Materials. Late in August, the Congressional Research Service published a report on MMTLP that did not quite validate retail investors’ claims. Last week, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Chairman Gary Gensler also addressed the MMTLP allegations before the Senate but did not provide any new information. On top of that, Meta Materials recently disclosed in a regulatory filing that Eric Leslie — a member of the firm’s Board of Directors and of the board’s Audit Committee and Human Resources and Compensation Committee — had resigned.
The only bright spot for investors now is that MMAT stock has been given a lifeline via the 180-day extension. That news has been enough to give shares a slight bump today. However, it’s worth noting that trading on the Nasdaq hasn’t done much for this unstable meme stock. Despite its place on a major tech stock index, Meta has still proven unable to demonstrate actual growth, even on positive news days.
What Comes Next?
Retail investors who still hold MMAT stock will celebrate this update as a win, claiming it as a turning point for the company. While that’s possible, it certainly isn’t probable and other investors shouldn’t rush to buy in.
The most likely scenario is that Meta Materials will still be trading well under $1 when the March deadline draws near. If MMAT isn’t close to the Nasdaq minimum quickly, uncertainty will set in, pushing shares down even further. As it stands, there’s just no reason to believe this unstable company can make the progress necessary to keep its spot on the exchange.
On Penny Stocks and Low-Volume Stocks: With only the rarest exceptions, InvestorPlace does not publish commentary about companies that have a market cap of less than $100 million or trade less than 100,000 shares each day. That’s because these “penny stocks” are frequently the playground for scam artists and market manipulators. If we ever do publish commentary on a low-volume stock that may be affected by our commentary, we demand that InvestorPlace.com’s writers disclose this fact and warn readers of the risks.
On the date of publication, Samuel O’Brient did not hold (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.