Stocks closed generally higher on Thursday, as subdued trading activity produced another modest gain led by optimism about the future of the U.S. economy. Even with the latest reading on GDP signaling a short-term contraction, few believe the expansion will end in the near future. The positive environment left very few stocks with substantial losses today, but Michael Kors Holdings (NYSE: KORS ) , Renewable Energy Group (NASDAQ: REGI ) , and Booz Allen Hamilton (NYSE: BAH ) were among the unlucky companies in the market.
Michael Kors Holdings fell 5%, reversing a more modest gain from yesterday in the wake of the company's quarterly earnings report Wednesday morning. Kors has generally seen its stock soar after earnings reports, but guidance for the current quarter wasn't nearly as positive as investors had expected from the upscale handbag and accessories retailer. Kors had largely avoided the hit felt by many high-momentum stocks, but some investors now believe the stock might have to prove itself all over again in order to regain its upward trajectory.
Renewable Energy Group dropped 8.5% after the biodiesel producer announced plans to sell $125 million in five-year convertible notes. The vast majority of the proceeds will go toward debt restructuring linked to its acquisition of full control of the Dynamic Fuels joint venture. Although the notes haven't yet priced, the potential for dilution of existing shareholders' interest in Renewable Energy Group is substantial, and investors are clearly worried that the growth prospects they'd hoped to get from the Dynamic Fuels acquisition won't be as great if they have to share profits with convertible-bond holders.
Booz Allen Hamilton declined 6% after the management and technology consultant followed up on the disappointing earnings report last week by announcing an offering of 10 million shares of its stock. Even after last week's slide, Booz Allen Hamilton stock holds a solid gain of more than 20% in 2014, and that prompted institutional investors at the Carlyle Group to sell off a portion of their position in the company. Even after the sale, though, Carlyle will have almost 46% of the Class A shares of Booz Allen Hamilton, and the company itself won't get any proceeds from the offering. Exit strategies like this for institutional investors are fairly common, and short-term fluctuations resulting from these large sales can be buying opportunities under the right conditions.
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