The bad news surrounding PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG) -- the California electric utility at the center of controversy because of its role in last year's Camp Fire wildfire, as well as an apparent imminent bankruptcy case -- just keeps getting worse. Yesterday, S&P downgraded PG&E's debt from CC to D, or basically from "junk bonds" to "just plain trash." Today, analysts at RBC Capital Markets followed up with a reduction in their price target on PG&E stock: from $45 to ...
... just $8 even.
Despite all the negative news, PG&E stock jumped as much as 11% in early trading today and remains up 9.7% as of 11 a.m. EST. Why?
Honestly, there doesn't seem to be a good reason for PG&E stock going up so much on no good news and more than a little bad news. My best guess at this point is that some investors who (rightly) predicted PG&E's downfall and shorted the stock are now collecting their winnings by buying back the shares -- which has the effect of bidding up the price of PG&E stock.
If I'm right about that, though, then the share price strength at PG&E won't last long. A higher price, but one unsupported by good news giving reason to believe PG&E shares will be worth anything after bankruptcy, is only going to attract new short-sellers to drive PG&E stock right back down again.
My advice? If you own PG&E stock, you've probably already lost a lot of money. Don't get suckered in by this latest rally and risk losing even more.
Check out the latest PG&E earnings call transcript.