Monday began on a positive note for investors after Treasury yields rebounded from last week's historic lows. U.S. regulators also agreed to extend a license allowing China's Huawei to work with U.S. customers for another 90 days. Together, the developments helped ease concerns for both the state of international trade and a potential global economic slowdown.

But even as major benchmarks rallied, several individual stocks saw sharply higher gains. Here's why NVIDIA (NASDAQ:NVDA), SINA (NASDAQ:SINA), and Tegna (NYSE:TGNA) did so well.

Seeing Minecraft in a whole new light

Shares of NVIDIA jumped 7% thanks to a combination of the aforementioned Huawei license extension -- which broadly benefits U.S.-based chip companies -- and a new agreement with Microsoft to add its RTX ray tracing technology to the PC version of the software giant's blockbuster Minecraft game.

Minecraft with NVIDIA's ray tracing enabled.

Image source: NVIDIA.

The Minecraft agreement is unusual considering the wildly popular video game has won praise for its simplistic design. But Minecraft's visual revamp -- which adds ultra-realistic effects like direct lighting from the sun, detailed hard and soft shadows, and transparent materials (water, ice, and stained glass) with reflection and light scattering -- offers massive incremental publicity for NVIDIA's industry-leading graphics technology.

"Minecraft will expose ray tracing to millions of gamers of all ages and backgrounds that may not play more hardcore video games," explained NVIDIA head of GeForce marketing Matt Wuebbling. "The world's best-selling video game adding ray tracing on PC illustrates the momentum that ray tracing has built in the gaming ecosystem."

SINA's stellar quarter

Shares of Sina soared 15.4% after the Chinese internet media company announced better-than-expected second-quarter 2019 results.

Adjusted (non-GAAP) quarterly revenue declined 1% year over year (but increased 5% at constant currencies) to $530.4 million -- well above estimates for revenue closer to $510 million. That translated into adjusted net income of $54 million, or $0.76 per share, down from $0.89 per share in the year-ago period but crushing estimates for earnings of $0.47 per share.

Sina's top-line results were bolstered by a 20% increase in adjusted non-advertising revenue to $96.8 million, which nearly offset a 5% decline in advertising sales to $433.6 million. 

Tegna is an acquisition target

Shares of Tegna popped 5.7% after The Wall Street Journal reported that the broadcast, digital media, and marketing company has rebuffed repeated acquisition efforts this year by private-equity firm Apollo Global Management.

More specifically, WSJ says Apollo sent a letter to Tegna's board in February expressing its interest in striking a deal, and has remained in contact with the company even as Tegna declined to move forward with a purchase.

Any such acquisition would need to come at a hefty premium to appease Tegna shareholders -- a task made more difficult for Apollo with Tegna stock already up more than 40% so far in 2019. But The Wall Street Journal's sources also noted Apollo may pursue other options, including a merger or selling its own portfolio of TV stations to Tegna.

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