The stock market is having a modestly strong week so far, with all three major indexes up between 0.9% and 1.2% for the week through Thursday afternoon. However, insurance disruptor Lemonade (LMND -4.23%) has been a big standout. As of Thursday at 3:30 p.m. EDT, Lemonade shares had gained 9% for the week after being up as much as 13%.
It's also worth noting that this is a continuation of big gains in Lemonade's stock price over the past couple weeks. In fact, since mid-May, Lemonade has rallied by a staggering 62% off its lows.
Surprisingly, there isn't any company-specific news behind this week's move. But there are a couple of potential explanations.
For one thing, Lemonade had been one of the most beaten-down stocks in the market for the first few months of the year. Short-seller reports and a negative reaction to the company's first-quarter earnings report sent the stock plummeting after an impressive run in the months following its IPO. In fact, even after the recent gains, Lemonade stock is still down roughly 50% from its January high.
It's also worth noting that we've seen quite a bit of short squeeze action in the so-called "meme stocks," which generally refers to heavily shorted companies. And Lemonade certainly qualifies. As of the latest information, nearly 22% of Lemonade's float is sold short, compared with about 3% for the average S&P 500 company. So, it's fair to say that much of Lemonade's recent price action could be the result of short-squeeze pressure.