Why Thompson Creek Metals, Titan Machinery, and Ruby Tuesday Jumped Today

Thursday started out just like any other day on Wall Street, with the market opening slightly higher on what looked like it might be a quiet day after yesterday's big gains. But by the end of the day, major stock market benchmarks had posted declines of 1.5% to 3%, with the Nasdaq taking the brunt of the selling pressure as investors fled formerly high-flying biotech and social-media stocks. Yet, amid the turmoil, Thompson Creek Metals (NYSE: TC  ) , Titan Machinery (NASDAQ: TITN  ) , and Ruby Tuesday (NYSE: RT  ) all saw their share prices jump substantially on Thursday.

Thompson Creek Metals rose almost 7%, building on gains from Wednesday after the mining company amended upward the first-quarter operating results it had issued yesterday. Thompson Creek said that the total amount of concentrate production for its key Mt. Milligan mine was 28,200 dry metric tons rather than 22,200. Although that didn't result in any further changes to Thompson Creek's results, Mt. Milligan produced impressive sequential growth of almost 37% in copper production, and a near doubling of gold production. That shows the success of Thompson Creek Metals' strategy to go beyond its original focus on molybdenum, and even with gold and copper prices well below their highs of recent years, Thompson Creek has plenty of ability to earn profits if Mt. Milligan continues to ramp up on the production front.

CNH / Case-IH tractor sold by Titan Machinery. Source: CNH / Case-IH.

Titan Machinery soared almost 15% after announcing plans to reduce its labor force after releasing its earnings for its fiscal fourth quarter. The farm-equipment retailer saw revenue drop 10%, but adjusted earnings came in well in excess of what investors had expected to see. Moreover, shareholders applauded Titan Machinery's decision to cut about 12% of its workers in an effort to reduce expenses. Even though Titan Machinery's guidance for the 2015 fiscal year was somewhat light on the revenue front, the real question is whether the company can turn that revenue into more profit, and guidance figures on the earnings front were somewhat more optimistic in investors' eyes.

Restaurant chain Ruby Tuesday climbed 12% after reporting its most-recent quarterly results. Even though same-store sales declined 1.9%, producing a net loss for the company, Ruby Tuesday managed to avoid the much-worse figures that investors had expected. Fundamentally, Ruby Tuesday still faces some big challenges, and while closing non-performing restaurant locations should have a positive impact in the long run by cutting costs, the fact that traffic figures fell points to an alarming trend among customers. Ruby Tuesday hopes that same-store sales for the current quarter will come in between -1% and +1%, but it will eventually have to do much better if it ever wants truly to recover.

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