Why Plug Power, Mechel, and JPMorgan Chase Soared Today

The stock market struggled in search of new record highs, but these three stocks went higher anyway. Find out more about what made them soar.

Jul 15, 2014 at 7:20PM

On Tuesday, the stock market began on a positive note, but comments from Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen threw cold water on investors' faces and led to a pullback from most major-market benchmarks. Although the Dow finished in positive territory, broader-based indexes fell modestly, with Yellen highlighting overvaluation in areas like biotechnology as raising concerns among policymakers. Despite the uncertain tone on Wall Street, many stocks managed to press higher, with Plug Power (NASDAQ:PLUG), Mechel (NYSE:MTL), and JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) all performing well today.

Source: Plug Power.

Plug Power soared 16% as bullish commentary from an analyst firm reawakened hopes of a hypergrowth phase for the fuel-cell system company. Analysts at FBR argued that within the next three years, Plug Power might control 10% of the electric forklift market, a niche that has helped drive Plug Power's early results recently thanks to big orders from companies including the nation's largest retailer. Moreover, if Plug Power can gain better market share of similar warehouse equipment, then the company could finally have a sustainable path toward a growing business. Shareholders might remain skeptical given the stock's track record of spiking higher only to retreat, but Plug Power has an opportunity to move forward in a potentially valuable market.

Mechel rose 9% as the Russian mining giant came to a deal with a creditor to refinance part of the company's extensive debt. The loan restructuring with VTB Bank extends the payment schedule and maturity of loans totaling 33.8 billion rubles, or almost $1 billion at current exchange rates. Now, Mechel won't have to make initial payments on the loans until next April, with final maturity in 2018. Still, unless conditions in the global market for metallurgical coal start to improve, it's uncertain whether the deal will be enough to help Mechel's long-term outlook very much.


JPMorgan Chase finished up 3.5% after a strong earnings report that helped pace the market's overall gains early in the session. Even though the bank reported a drop in overall earnings and revenue, the declines weren't nearly as bad as investors had initially thought. Even JPMorgan's own prediction of a 20% drop in trading revenue turned out to be only a 14% fall, following similar positive news from its banking peers in their earlier-released quarterly reports. Uncertainties like the future direction of Fed policy could continue to hold back JPMorgan's performance, especially if they keep would-be trading clients on the sidelines. Still, JPMorgan has done a good job in recovering from the worst of the financial crisis and continues to make hard-fought progress.

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Dan Caplinger owns shares of JPMorgan Chase. The Motley Fool recommends BMW and Nike and owns shares of JPMorgan Chase and Nike. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

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David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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