What happened

Shares of Snowflake (NYSE:SNOW) jumped 13.5% on Thursday, defying those who had expected the cloud-data leader's stock price to fall.

So what

Snowflake announced on Dec. 29 that its initial public offering (IPO) lock-up period would end on Jan. 7, allowing early investors and company insiders to sell their shares. Many analysts expected this selling to cause Snowflake's stock price to decline, with some going so far as to cut their price targets for its shares. 

A person is pointing to an upwardly sloping line that's above a flat line.

Snowflake's surging stock price surprised many investors on Thursday. Image source: Getty Images.

On Tuesday, Deutsche Bank analyst Patrick Colville slashed his price forecast on the data-warehousing company's stock from $335 to $270. He noted that with 37.9 million more shares becoming available for sale, the total amount of Snowflake's shares available for trading would jump by 87%. Colville thought investors would take this as a cue to sell, and Snowflake's stock price would fall in kind. 

However, at least for today, that prediction proved incorrect.

Now what 

Thursday's gains suggest that many early investors plan to hold on to their shares, at least for the time being. Perhaps they're intrigued by Snowflake's massive addressable market, which the company estimates to be as large as $14 billion for data warehousing -- and over $80 billion when including the entire cloud-data opportunity.

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