Diamond Foods' Shares Popped: 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 snack producer Diamond Foods (NAS: DMND) popped like a bag of its trademark Pop Secret popcorn, jumping as much as 11% on very heavy morning action.

So what: SunTrust analysts reiterated their buy rating of the stock, noting that "recent concerns are overblown." In particular, SunTrust expects the acquisition of Procter & Gamble's (NYS: PG) Pringles brand to close by the end of the year, which will enhance the Diamond brand something fierce.

Now what: A staggering 75% of Diamond's float was sold short as of mid-November, but share prices have fallen another 15% since then. It's reasonable to expect that a few short-sellers are taking profits here, boosting the analyst effect a bit further. An accounting scandal involving payments to walnut growers has brought on a flurry of shareholder lawsuits, internal audits, and other investigations, slicing share prices in half since late October. Those shorts are bound to cover their bets at some point. If you think the worst is over, this could be a terrific buy-in point -- I'm putting my CAPS rating where my mouth is and placing an "outperform" CAPScall on Diamond Foods right now.

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At the time thisarticle was published Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies mentioned. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Procter & Gamble. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinion, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Check out Anders' holdings and bio, or follow him on Twitter and Google+. We have a disclosure policy.

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