Last Week's Biggest Stock Movers: Linking In, Sending Money

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Plenty of stocks go up and down in any given week. The gainers inspire us to keep investing. The decliners keep greed in check while reminding us about the risks of the equity markets. Let's go over some of last week's best and worst performers.

Receptos (RCPT) -- Up 54 percent last week

Last week's biggest winner was a biotech that got some welcome news for a bowel-disease drug that's working its way toward FDA approval. Receptos shot higher after announcing encouraging results in a clinical trial for its drug that tackles ulcerative colitis.

The same drug had a positive outcome in a multiple sclerosis-based test a month earlier. Analysts at Leerink and Nomura Securities boosted their price targets on the news.

Blue Nile (NILE) -- Up 24 percent last week

Blue Nile, an online jeweler that specializes in diamond engagement rings, last week issued a healthy near-term outlook. Blue Nile's quarterly report may not seem all that impressive at first glance. Sales fell just short of analyst estimates and earnings merely matched Wall Street profit targets. However, things are looking better for the seasonally potent holiday quarter with Blue Nile's full-year outlook calling for 81 cents a share to 86 cents a share in earnings on $475 million to $490 million in sales. Analysts were perched at the lower end of those estimates.

LinkedIn (LNKD) -- Up 14 percent last week

Social networking is booming for work-minded leader LinkedIn. It came through with another strong quarter of market-thumping growth. Revenue soared 45 percent to $568.3 million, well ahead of the $557.7 million that Wall Street was forecasting. LinkedIn's earnings also exceeded expectations. LinkedIn's report came during a week when other social media giants slipped on concerns of slowing user growth.

MoneyGram (MGI) -- Down 31 percent last week

It was a rough week for MoneyGram. It announced that it would lower prices for domestic money transfers through 41,000 locations, a clear indication that Walmart's (WMT) move earlier this year to start its own money-transferring platform is leaving a mark.

MoneyGram's latest quarter was a dud. It's the first full quarter since Walmart rocked the market with a cheaper offering, and MoneyGram's move last week to cut fees on domestic transfers above $50 suggests that we may be in a pricing war in which the consumers win -- but providers do not.

InvenSense (INVN) -- Down 21 percent last week

Shares of InvenSense stumbled after the motion-based chip maker posted problematic quarterly results. InvenSense may be getting its gear into more smartphones and tablets, but it's having to sacrifice margins to make that happen.

Investors have flocked to InvenSense as a way to cash in on the mobile revolution. Its solutions promise to be popular if wearable computing eventually takes off. However, if it has to slash prices to win deals -- and that appears to be what's happening here, with gross margins sliding and profitability falling well short of expectations -- it may not be much of a victory.

hhgregg (HGG) -- Down 18 percent last week

It isn't easy selling appliances and other consumer electronics these days. Shares of hhgregg took a hit after the electronics retailer posted dreadful quarterly results. Net sales fell 11 percent, held back by an 11.4 percent decline in comparable-store sales. The chain also posted a steep deficit of 37 cents a share. Analysts were holding out for hhgregg to break even.

Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Blue Nile, InvenSense and LinkedIn. The Motley Fool owns shares of InvenSense and LinkedIn. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. To read about our favorite high-yielding dividend stocks for any investor, check out our free report.​
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