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.

1. Pandora streams a comeback tune
Pandora (NYS: P) had a double shot of good news this week.

On Monday it was the company's own report on the music-streaming service's metrics for the month of August. Pandora served up 1.16 billion hours of digital music and comedy, and that's a healthy 70% pop over the past year. Pandora's active listeners also climbed 48% to 56.2 million.

Keep watching those two metrics over time. Pandora provides this data monthly, and it's always great to see usage outpace users. It means that Pandora accounts are spending more time streaming per person.

The second round of good news came on Wednesday, when Apple's (NAS: AAPL) press event didn't mention iTunes rolling out a Pandora killer. Apple may very well be in talks with its major label partners for a streaming smorgasbord of its own, but it doesn't seem as if it will happen in time for next month's iTunes update.

Pandora has more time to pad its market-share lead.

2. Facebook finally finds the "like" button
You know that things have been rough when a mere 8% gain becomes newsworthy, but that's how things have gone for Facebook (NAS: FB) this year.

The leading social networking website saw its shares pop 8% on Wednesday, and it was actually the stock's biggest one-day gain since going public back in May. It has been pretty much a downward spiral since then, making Wednesday's modest burst truly stand out.

The catalyst this time was CEO Mark Zuckerberg's appearance at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference. His interview wasn't universally applauded, but those that did take comfort in his performance were impressed by a young CEO dealing with sluggish employee morale in light of a disappointing IPO. It also didn't hurt that he pointed out the company's initiatives in mobile and search.

3. Green energy
Shares of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (NAS: GMCR) have been brewing hot lately. The stock is up 32% over the past six trading days.

The latest cup of good news comes from Luigi Lavazza -- the Italian coffee giant -- raising its stake in the Keurig company to 6.8%. The position was revealed in an SEC filing on Monday.

Lavazza initially took a 7% stake in the company two years ago, investing $250 million in Green Mountain and announcing plans to eventually roll out an espresso maker in the U.S. together. Skeptics seemed to get the last laugh earlier this year, when Lavazza lowered its stake to below 5% in February. Lavazza blamed "global economic" issues for the divestiture.

What does it mean now that Lavazza is a buyer again? The two companies are still on track to introduce a high-pressure coffeemaker.

4. The sun always shines on TV
Sunesis Pharmaceuticals
(NAS: SNSS) has seen its stock soar 66% over the past three days on positive drug news.

The company is expanding the number of patients on the critical phase 3 clinical trial for Vosaroxin. The decision comes on the heels of the independent Data and Safety Monitoring Board concluding the positive efficacy of the potentially promising cancer drug.

5. Oh, let's not forget about Apple
There's still a week to go before lines begin forming at your local Apple Store, but investors don't have to wait to pre-order the tech giant's stock.

Apple shares hit an all-time high yesterday, a day after the Cupertino company's iPhone 5 press event. The phone may not be perfect, but it's enough of a material improvement that it should -- once again -- lead to record smartphone sales for the company.

Did you really think that Apple would disappoint? There's a reason why Apple is the world's most valuable tech company.

Keep it coming
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The Motley Fool owns shares of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Facebook, and Apple. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Apple, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, and Facebook. Motley Fool newsletter services have also recommended creating a lurking gator position in Green Mountain Coffee Roasters and a bull call spread position in Apple. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.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.

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