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Why Clean Energy Fuels' Shares Popped 46.3% on Friday

By Travis Hoium - Updated Mar 13, 2020 at 7:28PM

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The market may be bearish on Clean Energy Fuels Corp but management is very bullish long-term.

What happened 

Shares of natural gas fuel company Clean Energy Fuels Corp (CLNE -1.32%) jumped a whopping 46.3% in trading late on Friday after the company announced a big stock repurchase program. Shares happened to close at their high today, showing that investors were pushing the stock higher all day. 

So what

The big news was a $30 million stock repurchase program that was approved by Clean Energy Fuels' Board of Directors. The fact that a company with a market cap of just over $200 million at the close yesterday announced such a big repurchase program shows how bullish management is on the stock. 

Natural gas truck on the highway

Image source: Getty Images.

It didn't hurt that oil was up 4.7% today, recovering from a nearly month-long plunge. Diesel is the biggest competition for natural gas fuel, so higher prices for the underlying oil is generally good news for the natural gas industry. 

Now what

The fact that management is looking to buy as much as 15% of the company back from the market shows that they think Clean Energy Fuels is undervalued. If you're bullish on the stock, this is a great indicator of what insiders think of its future. 

What makes me a little cautious about this energy stock is that it's only barely profitable right now. In 2019, Clean Energy's net income was just $20.4 million, and with energy prices falling across the board there may be pressure on the business in 2020. But management thinks a turnaround is here, and that's why shares are up big to end the week. 

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