The major benchmarks were mixed today, though the indexes barely budged from where they began. Sentiment was muted as investors digested the devastation wrought on the U.S. Gulf Coast by Hurricane Harvey, which dumped 16 inches of rain on Houston within the first 24 hours while producing sustained winds that exceeded 130 miles per hour. Adding to the gloom was bad news from a number of individual companies. Expedia, Inc. (NASDAQ:EXPE), Chesapeake Energy Corporation (OTC:CHKA.Q), and Genesco Inc. (NYSE:GCO) were among the worst performers on the day. Below, we'll look more closely at these stocks to tell you why they did so poorly.
Expedia's CEO is catching a ride
Shares of Expedia fell 4.5% today on reports that CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has been selected by Uber's board to head the troubled ride-hailing company. The offer has been confirmed in an email sent to Expedia employees by Chairman Barry Diller. The note indicated that Khosrowshahi was expected to accept the offer.
Expedia shareholders have done well during Khosrowshahi's tenure with the travel-services company. In the 12 years since he took the helm, the company's revenue has more than quadrupled, from $2.1 billion in 2005 to $8.7 billion in 2016, and its stock price has tripled, doubling the performance of the broader market.
Khosrowshahi will have his work cut out for him at the embattled start-up. Uber's previous CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick left under a cloud following a series of scandals that included allegations of sexual harassment, discrimination, and theft of intellectual property.
Harvey batters refinery stocks
After falling more than 5%, shares of Chesapeake Energy Corporation recovered slightly to end the day down 3.7%, as refiners in the Gulf Coast went offline due to Hurricane Harvey. The Category 4 storm caused massive flooding, and heavy rains are expected to continue for several more days. Chesapeake said that production would decline as the company -- like many in the area -- was forced to suspend operations. The company shut down drilling and delayed the completion of fracking wells in the Eagle Ford shale as a result of the storm. Chesapeake expects lower production volumes until it can resume its Gulf Coast operations, though no word yet on when that might be.
Harvey, which has since been downgraded to a tropical storm, has shuttered 11% of U.S. refining capacity and 25% of oil production that occurs in the Gulf of Mexico, and questions remain regarding any potential damage to the region's energy infrastructure.
Genesco gets a downgrade
Finally, Genesco stock fell 8.8% after the release of a negative analyst note. The maker of footwear and apparel was downgraded today by Susquehanna, which cut its rating on the company from positive to neutral, while lowering its price target from $43 to $29. Analyst Sam Poser pointed to increased promotional activity for athletic footwear, fearing the trend will only intensify. He also charged that the company's Journeys stores are responding too slowly to rapidly changing consumer preferences.
The athletic footwear sector has been under pressure lately, as a number of retailers have reported declining sales due to the pressure e-commerce has put on retail. This comes as Genesco is scheduled to release the results of its fiscal 2018 second quarter on Aug. 31.