The stock market didn't make big moves on Thursday morning, as investors paid more attention to a rebound in bond yields that signaled at least a pause in the precipitous move lower for interest rates stemming from economic growth worries. As of 11:30 a.m. EDT, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) was down 16 points to 25,609. The S&P 500 (SNPINDEX:^GSPC) declined 2 points to 2,803, and the Nasdaq Composite (NASDAQINDEX:^IXIC) was down 10 points to 7,633.
Investors have been watching the marijuana industry closely, but the latest report from newly U.S.-listed pot stock CannTrust Holdings (OTC:CNTTQ) didn't give them the high that they'd hoped to get. However, yoga apparel specialist lululemon athletica (NASDAQ:LULU) continued its ascent, showing how companies can bounce back from adversity and recover their reputations if they work hard enough at it.
CannTrust can't satisfy cannabis investors
Shares of CannTrust Holdings dropped 17% Thursday morning in the wake of the Canadian cannabis company's fourth-quarter financial results. The move lower came despite obvious signs of significant growth. Revenue more than doubled from year-earlier levels as CannTrust boasted patient count growth in its medical marijuana operations from 37,000 at the end of 2017 to 58,000 at the beginning of this year. CannTrust sold more than 3,400 kilos of cannabis during the quarter, up from just over 750 kilos 12 months earlier.
Yet investors weren't happy with the size of CannTrust's losses for the period. The cannabis specialist posted more than 25.5 million Canadian dollars' worth of red ink for the quarter, with CannTrust citing the need for increased marketing, personnel, and administrative spending in order to support its growth efforts.
In addition, CannTrust's philosophy toward future growth might not be compatible with the current state of the industry. The company's outlook said that it wants to "make investments in a disciplined and deliberate manner," and while that sort of measured approach might work well in a relatively mature industry, the fast pace of innovation and competition in the marijuana market means that CannTrust risks getting left behind if it isn't bold enough. Today's share-price decline might send the message to CannTrust executives that it has to be more aggressive in order to have a chance of competing against much larger players in the space.
There's nothing sour at Lululemon
Meanwhile, shares of Lululemon Athletica soared 15% following the yoga retailer's release of its fourth-quarter financial report. Sales for the holiday quarter jumped more than expected, as Lululemon enjoyed solid growth both from its extensive network of physical stores and from its increasingly important e-commerce channel.
It wasn't that long ago that Lululemon was on the brink of losing its customers' trust for good. Scandals involving poor quality control in its production of yoga pants threatened to take away the brand's reputation for premium quality, and it took years for the company to convince disappointed customers that it had put in place measures to ensure those mistakes wouldn't happen again.
Now, Lululemon is back in growth mode. The retailer has highlighted key areas for expansion, including the lucrative Chinese market. At the same time, working to offer more products for men represents another opportunity for Lululemon to expand the reach of its brand. With customers of all genders becoming more interested in keeping fit and the benefits of yoga, Lululemon is capitalizing on its chance to fight off other athletic apparel companies and keep a stranglehold on its lucrative retail niche.