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 battleground stock Focus Media (Nasdaq: FMCN ) have jumped by upward of 11% on optimism for earnings that are due out any day now.
So what: The company has not confirmed an official earnings announcement, but it may come as soon as Monday. Late last year, shares were crushed by fraud allegations from famous short-seller Muddy Waters. Investors are clearly hoping that the results will put the fears to rest. The timing of the initial Muddy Waters attack was a little suspect, just a couple of days after Focus Media reported third-quarter results, so the next release would be months away.
Now what: The company has still been actively defending itself as best it can in the meantime, recently announcing a new dividend policy to inspire confidence in its cash flow. Chairman and CEO Jason Jiang even personally purchased $11 million in shares after the attack. Muddy Waters' claims have attracted the short-sellers, with 10.8 million shares held short as of this month, or about 8.3% of shares outstanding. Part of today's move could be shorts scrambling to cover in case the company's earnings come out strong.
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