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Why GameStop, AMC, and Sundial Growers Shares Surged Today

By Howard Smith – Updated Dec 7, 2021 at 5:29PM

Key Points

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Meme stocks outperformed the market Tuesday, and investors are looking forward to GameStop's next quarterly report on Wednesday.

What happened

Stocks moved higher Tuesday as the broad S&P 500 index closed the session up by about 2.1%, but meme stocks GameStop (GME -2.98%), AMC Entertainment (AMC -2.91%), and Canadian cannabis company Sundial Growers (SNDL 1.95%) experienced more significant gains of 6.5%, 7.8%, and 4.1%, respectively.

So what

These three names are still targets of meme-stock-focused retail traders. Part of the reason for that is the continued high short interest in the stocks. As of Nov. 15, 28% of Sundial's share float was still sold short, while there was 10.8% short interest in GameStop and 17% short interest in AMC, according to data from MarketWatch. It's likely that large fractions of the shareholders in these companies are just waiting for the holders of short positions to move to cover their positions and drive shares prices up via short squeezes. But at the same time, the companies themselves continue to work on improving their underlying businesses.

stock trader cheering in front of laptop.

Image source: Getty Images.

Now what

Sundial hasn't really focused much on its meme stock status. Management restructured the company this year using a two-pronged approach. The cannabis cultivation and production segment is still operating, but now, the company has an investment arm, too. Sundial recently announced it has filed for an initial public offering of that arm, Sunstream IVXX Investment Corp. Management said it expects the new public company to be legally regulated as a business development company as it continues to invest in cannabis-related enterprises. 

AMC CEO Adam Aron has taken a different approach to his company's status as a favorite among retail investors, who now hold the majority of its shares. Aron has engaged with them on social media, and also created AMC Investor Connect, a program that offers theater-related rewards and perks to shareholders. Most recently, the company said it will gift AMC Investor Connect members "an exclusive AMC NFT [non-fungible token] celebrating all of AMC's shareholders." Aron clearly is continuing to play to the younger demographic that dominates among meme stock traders. 

GameStop -- the original meme stock -- has been relatively quiet about the details of its intended transition into a more e-commerce focused business. Shareholders who have held on since its initial early 2021 rally will be looking forward to seeing GameStop's third-quarter report after the bell Wednesday. The company will likely need to show progress in its business pivot, or even its most dedicated investors may start to get impatient.

Howard Smith has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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