The day after Thanksgiving is often a quiet one on Wall Street, with many professionals choosing to take the opportunity for a rare four-day weekend. However, markets are open for trading until 1 p.m. ET, and futures contracts on major stock indexes suggested that stock prices would be flat to slightly higher overall when the shortened trading session begins.
Black Friday also has a reputation for shopping, and this year, it's not just happening online or at the malls. Shares of Silvergate Capital (SI -8.00%) and Manchester United (MANU -0.72%) got boosts in premarket trading as a combination of news and rumors swirled about some high-profile prospective buyers of their shares.
Silvergate gets some crypto interest
Shares of Silvergate Capital were up almost 2% on Friday morning, following an 11% rise on the day before Thanksgiving. The cryptocurrency banking expert has taken a hit recently due to concerns about exposure to the bankruptcy of digital asset exchange giant FTX, but a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) late Wednesday showed that Silvergate is attracting the attention of some well-known investors in the crypto space.
The SEC filings showed that Block.one, which developed the EOS blockchain protocol, now holds 2.36 million shares of Silvergate. That's 7.46% of the bank's outstanding shares, and a separate filing from Block.one founder Brendan Blumer showed his holding another 571,000 shares with sole voting power, for a combined stake of 9.27%.
Block.one issued a statement on Thanksgiving Day explaining that it believes Silvergate has been able to provide valuable innovation in the digital asset realm within the regulatory framework that banks must follow. That's an invaluable asset during times when crypto-related ventures have substantial counterparty risk, and Block.one played up Silvergate's conservatively managed balance sheet.
The Silvergate Exchange Network has been an important gateway between mainstream financial infrastructure and the 24/7 digital asset world, and its shares have fallen sharply as declines in digital asset prices have steepened due to ripple effects from the FTX bankruptcy. Block.one's move is a vote of confidence, and investors seem willing to take notice even on a slow trading day.
Is Apple ready for some soccer?
Meanwhile, shares of Manchester United rose another 9% Friday morning, adding to their 26% jump on Wednesday. The English soccer team's stock continued its upward trajectory as reports surfaced that it might have gotten the attention of an interesting potential buyer.
Manchester United's stock started soaring when the team announced that it would pursue strategic alternatives, which could include a potential sale. After having played a dominant role in the sport in England for 20 years, Man U has fallen from grace and hasn't won a Premier League championship in a decade. Fans are anxious for ownership to make larger investments to get top-quality players and coaching in order to secure a return to the winner's circle.
Friday's move higher comes from a tabloid report that Apple (AAPL 0.68%) might pursue a purchase of the team. Putting a $7 billion price tag on Manchester United, the unsourced report speculated that Apple and CEO Tim Cook might see opportunities in owning a well-known sports franchise.
Apple shares were down 1% in premarket trading, but even spending that much would hardly put a dent in the tech giant's cash balance. Unless other news organizations are able to substantiate the report, though, shareholders should be cautious about making too much of the rumors.