Monday was a bad day on Wall Street, with major benchmarks falling between 1% and 2%. Investor weren't happy about the latest U.S. proposals on trade, which included threats to disallow or restrict foreign investment in American technology. That was particularly troublesome for the Nasdaq Composite, which suffered bigger declines than the broader market. Even with the negative mood, some stocks still managed gains. Campbell Soup (NYSE:CPB), Gray Television (NYSE:GTN), and Boardwalk Pipeline Partners (NYSE:BWP) were among the best performers on the day. Here's why they did so well.
Campbell: Mmm mmm good for Kraft Heinz?
Shares of Campbell Soup jumped more than 9% on reports that food rival Kraft Heinz (NASDAQ:KHC) might be interested in buying out the soup specialist. It's not unusual for a general lack of interest in an industry to spur talk of consolidation, and the processed food industry has been going through some difficult times lately, including rising ingredient costs and shifting consumer trends toward fresher, healthier items. Soup in particular has been a drag on Campbell's results, and now would be an auspicious time for a buyout, given a transition in the CEO role. The companies haven't commented, though, and many of those following the stock don't think a buyout of Campbell is likely.
Gray makes a purchase
Gray Television stock soared 16% after the company announced that it will buy one of its rivals in the television broadcasting industry. Gray will purchase privately held Raycom Media for $3.65 billion, including $2.85 billion in cash as well as a combination of Gray preferred and common shares. The combined company will have more than 140 stations in over 90 markets across the U.S., making it the third-largest station owner in the country and reaching almost a quarter of all U.S. households. In addition, Gray will acquire diversified media holdings like production and events management division Raycom Sports and the sports and entertainment production specialist Tupelo Raycom. Gray has already agreed to divest stations in markets where there's significant overlap, with the intent of making it easy for regulators to approve the deal.
Boardwalk perks up
Finally, units of Boardwalk Pipeline Partners rose 5%. The master limited partnership has seen its value consistently erode over the past year, but there's been speculation in the last several months that controlling shareholder Loews (NYSE:L) could choose to buy out the limited partnership units. Some investors have been pleased at the idea of possibly getting a quick bump from recent low share prices, but longer-term unitholders aren't thrilled about having held on this long only to have Loews buy them out at a bargain price. It's unclear which side will win out, but today's move at least makes it clear that investors are paying attention.