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Why Micron Technology, Eldorado Gold, and America's Car-Mart Jumped Today

By Dan Caplinger - May 22, 2018 at 4:33PM

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Find out why the potential end of a government dispute helped one of these stocks.

Tuesday was down day on Wall Street, with major benchmarks losing a quarter percent or more. Market participants spent a lot of time watching the geopolitical situation, where a planned meeting between leaders of North Korea and the U.S. ran into possible hurdles. Yet there wasn't a really big response in some of the financial markets, with oil staying close to the $72-per-barrel mark and 10-year Treasury yields remaining above 3%. Some individual companies had good news that sent their shares higher, however. Micron Technology (MU 1.20%), Eldorado Gold (EGO 0.77%), and America's Car-Mart (CRMT -2.09%) were among the best performers on the day. Here's why they did so well.

Micron plans a big buyback

Shares of Micron Technology jumped 6%, making it two days in a row of solid gains for the memory chip specialist. After reporting good quarterly results, Micron said that it had authorized a massive $10 billion stock repurchase. As CEO Sanjay Mehrotra said, "Our business results have dramatically strengthened Micron's balance sheet, and this stock buyback program emphasizes our ongoing commitment to enhancing shareholder value." Although Micron isn't obligated to repurchase shares, investors saw the move as consistent with the chipmaker's broader strategy of returning half of free cash flow to investors beginning next year. Some might argue that the cyclical nature of the chip industry makes buybacks near recent highs imprudent, but for now, shareholders are pleased with the move.

Three Micron semiconductor chips loosely stacked near each other against a white surface.

Image source: Micron Technology.

Eldorado looks for resolution

Eldorado Gold stock jumped 16% after news that a long dispute with the Greek government might be coming to a close. Greece has been at an impasse with the gold mining company about plans to develop properties in the Halkidiki region in the northern part of the Mediterranean nation, including the Skouries gold and copper project, with environmental concerns leaving the two parties without an obvious path forward. Yet the Greek energy ministry reportedly said that it will look to resolve the issues over the next several weeks, following Eldorado's having gotten a favorable arbitration ruling. It's too early to be sure things will work out well for Eldorado, but investors are optimistic that something will get done in the near future.

America's Car-Mart drives ahead

Finally, shares of America's Car-Mart gained 14%. The Bentonville-based automotive dealership network said that net earnings more than doubled from year-ago levels in the fourth quarter of its 2018 fiscal year, with same-store revenue climbing at a double-digit percentage pace. Gains in unit sales and average prices helped bolster the company's results, and CEO Jeff Williams pointed to other internal metrics related to inventory management and credit quality as positive indicators for the car dealer. Some forward-thinking advocates of self-driving automobiles believe that America's Car-Mart and its peers face an existential threat in the long run, but for now, shareholders are celebrating the good short-term performance.

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Stocks Mentioned

Micron Technology, Inc. Stock Quote
Micron Technology, Inc.
MU
$59.14 (1.20%) $0.70
Eldorado Gold Corporation Stock Quote
Eldorado Gold Corporation
EGO
$7.17 (0.77%) $0.06
America's Car-Mart Stock Quote
America's Car-Mart
CRMT
$105.09 (-2.09%) $-2.24

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

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