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What: Shares of global cement giant Cemex (NYS: CX) were looking uncharacteristically solid today, soaring as much as 27% in intraday trading on hopes that European efforts will stem the region's fiscal crisis.
So what: For Mexico-based Cemex, North America is the largest lever for performance, with hefty chunks of business in Mexico and the United States. However, roughly a third of the company's revenue comes from Europe. As the company struggles under a massive, threatening debt load, it really can't afford to have any major region suffering. Since a solution -- or at least the avoidance of total disaster -- in Europe could mean better times ahead in that region, good news for the EU is good news for Cemex.
Now what: Over the summer I recommended Cemex as part of one of my bargain-bin baskets. That thumbs-up was based on the fact that there is a real business here, the stock looks very cheap, and if the company doesn't collapse under the weight of its debt, the stock could see serious gains. But it's also not a stock that I'd recommend putting any serious amount of money into or bothering with at all if you're risk-averse and looking for solid, long-term holdings.
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