Barnes & Noble's Shares Surged: What You Need to Know
Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
What: Shares of bookstore chain Barnes & Noble (NYS: BKS) jumped as high as 10% today on more than five times their average trading volume -- but then fell back to a 1.7% gain that underperformed the Dow Jones (INDEX: ^DJI) index.
So what: A CNBC show highlighted the bookseller's recent market run this morning while presenting the Nook series as a serious rival to the Amazon.com (NAS: AMZN) Kindle line. That media-fueled enthusiasm evaporated later on, when the same cable channel also noted that Apple (NAS: AAPL) fever is running rampant in Hong Kong and elsewhere.
Now what: The truth, of course, lies between these extreme highs and lows. The basic Kindle and Nook models provide a simpler experience that even Apple's mighty supply chains can't price-match. The Nook Tablet and Kindle Fire, on the other hand, are perhaps the first truly compelling non-Apple tablets on the market at competitive price points. A lot of the Nook's promise has already been priced into Barnes & Noble at this point, but the stock is still cheap by many traditional retail metrics. Buying here wouldn't be a huge mistake, mostly thanks to a digital strategy that Borders and Books-a-Million never could match. May they rest in pieces.
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