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These 2 Hot Stocks Are Headed Skyward Tuesday

By Dan Caplinger – Aug 31, 2021 at 1:19PM

Key Points

  • Markets were largely flat Tuesday at midday.
  • Virgin Galactic rose on favorable comments from a Wall Street analyst.
  • Digital Turbine climbed after getting added to the S&P MidCap 400 Index.

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Markets were little changed, but these companies had solid gains.

The stock market shifted into neutral on Tuesday as investors tried to reconcile ongoing concerns about economic factors and the COVID-19 pandemic with the strong upward momentum major benchmarks have seen lately. At noon EDT, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI 0.10%) was up 32 points to 35,432. However, the S&P 500 (^GSPC -0.12%) eased lower by a point to 4,528, and the Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC) fell 17 points to 15,249.

There were, however, some stocks that put in extremely strong gains. Virgin Galactic Holdings (SPCE -1.15%) has become nearly a household name for many investors, but Digital Turbine (APPS 0.21%) is a relative newcomer. Here's why both of their stocks were on the move higher Tuesday.

Virgin Galactic is go for launch, according to Wall Street

Shares of Virgin Galactic were higher by nearly 10% at midday on Tuesday. The space tourism specialist has had considerable business success in recent months, and although its stock hasn't always followed suit, analysts on Wall Street think now might be the right time to consider buying.

Virgin Galactic spaceplane at primary ignition.

Image source: Virgin Galactic Holdings.

Virgin Galactic got positive comments from analysts at Jefferies, who initiated coverage of the stock with a buy rating. Jefferies set a $33-per-share price target on Virgin Galactic, suggesting further upside potential of around 20% even from currently elevated levels.

Analysts are optimistic about Virgin Galactic's ability to tap into a large market for its core business. They see roughly 250,000 people being willing and able to pay a $450,000 price tag in the next decade, and that works out to $112.5 billion in potential revenue. Jefferies also thinks that Virgin Galactic can dramatically ramp up its mission calendar, expecting nearly two flights on average every day by 2030.

Many have been skeptical of Virgin Galactic's long-term prospects. Yet when you consider the ancillary benefits the company's technology could provide, including space research and the possibility of long-range trans-global commercial flight, the Sir Richard Branson-founded space tourism business might well grow into its full potential in the years to come.

Digital Turbine spins up

Meanwhile, shares of Digital Turbine rose 16%. The company got recognition for its recent growth from a prominent index manager.

S&P Dow Jones Indices announced yesterday that Digital Turbine would join the S&P MidCap 400 index. The move is result of the vacancy left by Ligand Pharmaceuticals, which got demoted to the S&P SmallCap 600 based on its smaller market capitalization.

Digital Turbine has been a solid winner from the move toward digital transformation, as its business centers on helping its customers make money from their application platforms. However, the stock has been under pressure in recent months, with some investors fearing that moves from major industry players could jeopardize its business model.

As the economy improves, however, Digital Turbine is optimistic that it can benefit from better conditions in the digital advertising industry. The stronger businesses are, the more they're likely to spend on marketing, and the digital channel has a lot of growth potential. Through numerous recent acquisitions, Digital Turbine is making itself a name in the industry -- and now, a host of index investors will have exposure to its stock.

Dan Caplinger owns shares of Virgin Galactic Holdings Inc. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Stocks Mentioned

Virgin Galactic Stock Quote
Virgin Galactic
SPCE
$5.14 (-1.15%) $0.06
Dow Jones Industrial Average (Price Return) Stock Quote
Dow Jones Industrial Average (Price Return)
^DJI
$34,429.88 (0.10%) $34.87
S&P 500 Index - Price Return (USD) Stock Quote
S&P 500 Index - Price Return (USD)
^GSPC
$4,071.70 (-0.12%) $-4.87
NASDAQ Composite Index (Price Return) Stock Quote
NASDAQ Composite Index (Price Return)
^IXIC
$11,482.45 (%)
Digital Turbine Stock Quote
Digital Turbine
APPS
$18.82 (0.21%) $0.04

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

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