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Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over daily movements, we do like to keep an eye on market changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
For the stock market, a fifth straight day of losses for the Dow and S&P 500 heightened fears that investors should prepare for a long-awaited correction. Even though the pullback has been relatively minor, cutting less than 2% from the benchmarks record highs, investors are increasingly concerned about the uncertainty involved in the Federal Reserve's future monetary-policy moves. Yet Mattress Firm (NASDAQ: MFRM ) , Navios Maritime Holdings (NYSE: NM ) , and Oxford Immunotec Global (NASDAQ: OXFD ) all posted solid double-digit percentage gains despite the gloomy mood in the market.
Mattress Firm gained almost 14% after releasing a favorable quarterly report. The mattress retailer reported that same-store sales jumped 2.9%, producing overall revenue growth of 18% and a 17% gain in adjusted earnings per share. Favorable guidance also heartened investors who were concerned about the company's ability to keep its growth trajectory going without sacrificing profit margins. As the housing market has heated up, furniture and mattress companies hope that they'll be able to ride on its coattails for a long time.
Shipping company Navios Maritime Holdings jumped almost 10% on a strong day for shipping stocks in general, as peer Baltic Trading (UNKNOWN: BALT.DL ) nearly matched Navios' success with an 8% move up of its own. Just about all of the major shipping companies reported their most recent results within the past few weeks, and the consensus appears to be that while rates have bottomed, it's less certain whether recent gains will continue or whether the shipping market will stall for a while to consolidate its recent gains. The nice thing about Navios is that it pays a solid 3% dividend to shareholders while they wait, and if a global economic recovery does gain steam, Navios should be among those companies that benefit most. Baltic also pays a dividend, albeit more modest, and it has stayed near two-year highs on the general level of optimism in the market.
Oxford Immunotec Global gained almost 17%, building on the gains it enjoyed late last month after its initial public offering. Pricing at $12 per share, Oxford closed at nearly $15 on its first day, as investors were enthusiastic about the diagnostics company's prospects in developing tests in the immunology field. With a tuberculosis test already available and approved for sale in the U.S. and 50 countries worldwide, Oxford has enough potential to appeal to investors looking to get in on the ground floor.
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