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Upstart Leads Nasdaq Higher as Apogee Falls Back

By Dan Caplinger – Sep 21, 2021 at 2:14PM

Key Points

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Winners continue to win.

Monday's swoon for the stock market quickly gave way to a recovery for the Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC -0.72%) today. Although gains early Tuesday afternoon were somewhat limited at about two-thirds of a percent, the Nasdaq nevertheless showed its continued superiority by posting larger percentage gains than its fellow major indexes.

Helping to drive the Nasdaq higher was another big jump for Upstart Holdings (UPST -2.33%), as the fintech disruptor hit another all-time high. However, the news wasn't entirely good for Nasdaq stocks; Apogee Enterprises (APOG 0.32%) gave up some ground. Below, we'll look more closely at what moved both stocks.

Another new partner for Upstart

Shares of Upstart Holdings were up 10%, pushing above $320 per share. The innovative artificial intelligence-driven lending platform provider announced another deal that showed its potential for long-term growth ahead.

Two people looking at papers with graphs on them along with a third person.

Image source: Getty Images.

Upstart has entered into a partnership with WSFS Financial's (WSFS -0.09%) banking unit. WSFS Bank launched a digital personal loan product that Upstart's AI lending platform will power. With nearly two centuries of serving banking clients, WSFS characterized the move as one component in its broader efforts to invest in technology to meet the changing needs of its customers. WSFS hopes that its new personal loan solution will be more affordable to its customer base around Philadelphia and the Delaware River Valley.

The move is just the latest new partnership that Upstart has entered into recently. The move addresses one concern that Upstart investors have had, with its early reliance on a small number of banking partners making some fear that Upstart wouldn't be able to gain adoption across the broader lending industry.

Upstart is locked in hypergrowth mode, and any move it makes to bolster its revenue potential should get a favorable reception from shareholders. For now, Upstart is in its ascendancy, and despite an expensive valuation, the stock could continue to rise as long as more investors believe in its future prospects.

Walking on broken glass?

Meanwhile, shares of Apogee Enterprises fell 9%. The maker of architectural glass and other products reported second-quarter financial results that left investors wanting more.

Apogee's numbers showed the difficulties the company faced. Revenue climbed just 2% year over year to $326 million. Moreover, adjusted earnings slid by 27% to $0.53 per share, which was somewhat lower than what most of those following the stock had expected to see.

Like many manufacturers, Apogee has had to deal with significant levels of cost inflation in the materials it needs to provide its services. Moreover, supply chain challenges caused ongoing problems for Apogee, and the company also suffered from sluggish conditions in the construction markets that kept activity levels well below what Apogee enjoyed before the pandemic began in early 2020.

The good news for Apogee, though, was that the company enjoyed segment gains in a couple key businesses. Architectural services revenue climbed by double-digit percentages as Apogee worked off some of the projects in its backlog. The relatively small large-scale optical segment also performed well. Investors have to hope that those areas will provide the catalysts that Apogee will need to recover more fully from its recent slump.

Dan Caplinger has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Upstart Holdings, Inc. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Stocks Mentioned

Upstart Stock Quote
Upstart
UPST
$16.73 (-2.33%) $0.40
NASDAQ Composite Index (Price Return) Stock Quote
NASDAQ Composite Index (Price Return)
^IXIC
$10,936.05 (-0.72%) $-78.84
Apogee Enterprises Stock Quote
Apogee Enterprises
APOG
$46.57 (0.32%) $0.15
WSFS Financial Stock Quote
WSFS Financial
WSFS
$46.34 (-0.09%) $0.04

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

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