Monday was a poor day on Wall Street, as major market benchmarks finished mixed to begin the week. The release of the letter from Attorney General William Barr to Congress regarding the investigation of special counsel Robert Mueller into Russian efforts to disrupt the 2016 U.S. elections failed to give investors a universally agreed-upon resolution to the issue, and continuing economic challenges made some believe a recession could be more likely in the months to come. Yet some stocks managed to post solid gains. Cronos Group (CRON -3.49%), Avaya Holdings (AVYA 2.56%), and Eldorado Gold (EGO -1.89%) were among the top performers. Here's why they did so well.
Cronos gets ready for earnings
Shares of Cronos Group climbed nearly 7% as investors prepared to hear how the Canadian cannabis company did in the fourth quarter of 2018. The report will be the first since cigarette giant Altria Group made a $1.8 billion investment in Cronos, obtaining a 45% stake in the marijuana producer. Investors fully expect to see the same explosive gains in sales that Cronos' peers have posted, given the opening of the Canadian recreational cannabis market in mid-October. Yet what could really feed further growth is a glimpse of CEO Mike Gorenstein's strategic vision for using the vast resources Altria brings to the table to help Cronos catch up with and surpass some of its largest rivals to lead the cannabis market.
Avaya mulls going private
Avaya Holdings saw its stock soar almost 33% after reports that the telecommunications equipment specialist might be considering a leveraged buyout. Even though Avaya filed for bankruptcy protection in January 2017 and only emerged from the process in December 2017, the reports suggest that the company's stock could fetch $20 per share or more if a bid actually surfaces. Admittedly, that'd only return the stock price to where shares traded as recently as last October, but as competition has grown fiercer, some believe that the move could be Avaya's best chance to give itself the greater flexibility and leeway to pursue riskier strategies that it needs to emerge victorious in the long run.
Eldorado shines brighter
Finally, shares of Eldorado Gold gained 6%. The gold mining company's stock has done well lately, in part sharing in the strong performance that gold bullion prices have put in to start 2019. Yet there's more to Eldorado's story than that, as the miner recently told investors that it intends to reopen its flagship Turkish mine using innovative mining methods that should save it money. Skeptics note that the reopening of the Kisladag mine will only cause production to climb for a couple of years before deteriorating again, but shareholders seem content to see any good news in an industry that's been hit hard throughout much of the 2010s.