The stock market has been extremely volatile lately, and investors had to deal with another day of sharp declines on Wall Street on Wednesday. Market sentiment has varied greatly depending on views about what the Federal Reserve is likely to do with interest rates throughout 2022, and increasingly hawkish statements from Fed decision makers suggest they will tighten monetary policy unexpectedly fast. That sent major market benchmarks lower, with high-growth stocks taking the brunt of the hit. As of 11:30 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI -1.08%) is down 282 points to 34,359. The S&P 500 (^GSPC -1.64%) has dropped 58 points to 4,467, and the Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC -1.82%) has fallen 344 points to 13,861.
Even with the broader market falling, some stocks were able to buck the trend and move higher. Tilray Brands (TLRY -3.44%) was one of the best performers in the market, as the cannabis pioneer reported earnings results that gave shareholders new optimism for the future. However, even bigger gains went to a rising star in the energy industry, as NextDecade (NEXT -5.48%) inked a deal that shows the strong demand for its anticipated liquefied natural gas export capacity.
Tilray lights up
Shares of Tilray were up 14% at midday Wednesday. The cannabis company reported fiscal third-quarter financial results that showed a rebound in interest in marijuana and Tilray's related product lines.
Overall, Tilray's numbers looked solid. Revenue for the quarter rose 23% to $151.9 million. Although the company continued to lose money on an operational basis, operating losses were down substantially year over year. Moreover, special adjustments produced nonoperating income that caused Tilray to report another profitable quarter.
Tilray had several success stories. Beverage alcohol revenue soared 64%, supplementing 32% gains from cannabis. The company stayed at the top of the pecking order in Canadian market share, and it said that it has achieved $76 million in cost synergies from its acquisition of Aphria. Just this month, launches of new edibles, a partnership with Whole Foods Market, and recognition for the SweetWater Brewing unit for its craft-beer growth all played in Tilray's favor.
Today's gains didn't put a big dent in the drop of more than 60% in Tilray's stock price over the past year. Nevertheless, with some investors looking to the potential for U.S. legalization in the near future, Tilray deserves a closer look right now.
NextDecade loves LNG
Meanwhile, gains for NextDecade were even larger. The stock was up 17% at midday after having risen as much as 30% earlier in the morning.
NextDecade announced that it had reached a 20-year agreement with China's ENN. Under the terms of the deal, ENN will purchase 1.5 million metric tons per year of liquefied natural gas (LNG), with supplies expected to start once NextDecade's Rio Grande LNG export project in south Texas comes online. Current projections for commercial operations indicate that could happen as soon as 2026.
NextDecade isn't the only company looking to capitalize on voracious demand for natural gas overseas. Cheniere Energy (LNG -1.62%) is further along with its plans and has seen huge share-price gains, while Tellurian (TELL -2.68%) just started construction on its Driftwood LNG project late last month.
Unlike crude oil, natural gas is relatively hard to transport, and that has led to huge price disparities by geographical location. That creates opportunity for LNG companies like NextDecade, but investors will still have to wait for the facility to get through construction before seeing how well the company reaps the rewards of its long efforts.