What happened

Materials technology specialist Rogers Corporation (ROG -2.43%) was a dog of a stock for the second straight day on Thursday. A day after its share price plunged following the cancellation of a big-ticket merger, it again obeyed gravity by declining an additional 14%-plus.

So what

Investors really get their hopes up when their company is courted by a larger, more deep-pocketed peer. That was the case with Rogers, which was set to be absorbed by chemical industry bellwether DuPont (DD 0.04%) in a $5.2 billion deal that would have valued Rogers at $277 per share -- nearly 50% above its share price at that point.

Those hopes were dashed on Tuesday after market hours when DuPont announced it was pulling out of the arrangement due to the inability "to obtain timely clearance from all the required regulators" (China, specifically).

The company is paying Rogers a $162.5 million termination fee because of this. That's a decent sum, to be sure, but to investors, it surely feels more like a cheap consolation prize.

Now what

Outside of the Chinese regulatory hiccups, the DuPont/Rogers deal actually seemed to be going more or less smoothly. So that might be one factor in the shell shock investors are feeling just now.

While those folks are overreacting at this point, it's hard to escape playing that old, cancelled merger game of What Might Have Been. In the most likely scenario, Rogers will do fine on its own; it's just too bad it won't be part of the muscular, ever-influential and very well-capitalized DuPont. At least not for now.