This Week's 5 Smartest Stock Moves
If you're feeling good about the market, you're not alone. Take my hand as we go over some of this week's more uplifting headlines.
Facing a looming debt payment deadline, Clearwire was able to secure as much as $1.6 billion in financing from Sprint Nextel (NYS: S) and a commitment that now stretches through the working relationship between the two companies through 2013.
Clearwire needed some of the money to clear this week's financial hurdle, but the balance will make sure that it's able to upgrade its network to the more desirable LTE. However, this also validates Clearwire's business. There are times when it seems as if Sprint Nextel is Clearwire's only cheerleader, but at least that commitment is strong enough for the wireless carrier to put its money where its pompoms are.
2. EA is in the social game, again
Electronic Arts (NAS: ERTS) continues to set itself up as a perfect sympathy play for when Zynga goes public two weeks from today.
EA is acquiring KlickNation, a maker of social games. KlickNation obviously isn't Zynga. Its Age of Champions and Superhero City games have 140,000 and 130,000 active monthly users on Facebook, respectively. Then again, while terms of the purchase aren't being disclosed, this clearly isn't going to cost EA a whole lot. The key point here is that it's incremental to EA's growing portfolio of social games, and it makes EA shares that much more attractive if Zynga shares pop when it goes public.
3. Cool beans
Sometimes you just to wake up and smell the coffee stock.
Shares of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (NAS: GMCR) have climbed 10% over the past two trading days on back-to-back bullish analyst notes.
Wednesday found Canaccord Genuity's Scott Van Winkle reiterating his buy rating and $94 price target on the stock. Van Winkle feels that retailers are giving Keurig and K-Cup portion packs 30% to 50% more shelf space than they were a year ago.
Yesterday, it was William Blair analyst Jon Andersen upgrading the stock to outperform on encouraging trends that find the residential coffee market moving to the single-serve portion niche that Green Mountain currently dominates.
Green Mountain has a long way to go before getting back to its earlier highs. It will also have to slay a few monsters beneath its bed to get there. However, it's comforting to see analysts warm up to a fallen growth stock that still flashes strong fundamentals.
4. Three more months of kicking ads and taking names
Terrestrial radio giant Clear Channel has a good thing going with its iHeartRadio app. Folks may love to diss FM and AM radio, but Clear Channel's app that allows folks to stream hundreds of the media company's terrestrial radio stations remains one of the top music smartphone downloads.
Back in September, Clear Channel introduced customized music channels in a clear shot at Pandora (NYS: P) . The free offering got even better when Clear Channel revealed it will run ad-free -- unlike the free version of Pandora -- through the end of the year. Well, December's here and now iHeartRadio is making its customized channels ad-free through the end of March.
It's a good move, especially since Sirius XM Radio (NAS: SIRI) plans to raise rates for its premium satellite radio service next month. Ad revenue soared 102% in Pandora's latest quarter, so you know it's not going to match Clear Channel in a move that may disrupt its own model.
5. Beating leukemia
Leukemia is a brutal blood cancer, but Micromet (NAS: MITI) is one step closer to getting its promising drug candidate on the market as a treatment for acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Micromet is initiating a phase 2 trial for blinatumomab. An earlier test with a limited sample size was extremely encouraging with nine of 12 recipients achieving complete remission. The more elaborate clinical trial will test the treatment on 65 leukemia patients.
The clinical trial process for drug approval can take a long time, but at least Micromet keeps moving in the right direction.
If you want to see if these companies continue to do the smart thing, track them through My Watchlist.
- AddSirius XM Radioto My Watchlist.
- AddSprint Nextelto My Watchlist.
- AddPandora Mediato My Watchlist.
- AddMicrometto My Watchlist.
- AddGreen Mountain Coffee Roastersto My Watchlist.
- AddElectronic Artsto My Watchlist.
- AddClearwireto My Watchlist.
At the time this article was published Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a lurking gator position in Green Mountain Coffee Roasters. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz calls them as he sees them. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story, except for Green Mountain. Rick is also part of theRule Breakersnewsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.