2016 has gotten off to the worst start in stock market history, and Friday marked a new low point for the market this year. The Dow and S&P 500 had their biggest drops of the new year, and the Dow posted its first weekly close below 16,000 in almost two years. Most commentators continue to blame China and the energy markets for the declines, and crude oil closed below $30 per barrel for the first time in more than a decade. Yet even with the big drop, Wynn Resorts (WYNN -3.79%), Revlon (REV), and Aaron's (AAN) were among Friday's rare winners on Wall Street.
Wynn Resorts jumped 13% after the casino giant posted preliminary financials for the fourth quarter that were far better than many investors had feared. Wynn's performance in Macau will continue to be extremely weak, with expected revenues declining by more than 25% from year-ago levels, and GAAP operating income potentially falling by more than half. Yet Wynn's presence in Las Vegas will offset some of those declines, thanks to net revenue gains of as much as 5% and operating-income gains that could climb 20% or more from this time last year.
At this point, Wynn stock has fallen so far that even early signs of decelerating contraction in revenue from Macau could be enough to trigger a substantial rebound, and Wynn's share-price performance in a terrible overall market shows the extent to which investors have wanted to see a turnaround for the casino giant.
Revlon gained 12%. The cosmetics specialist's stock responded to news that billionaire investor Ron Perelman will look for potential ways to enhance Revlon's share price through strategic alternatives. Perelman's MacAndrews & Forbes investment company owns a controlling 78% interest in Revlon, and shareholders had grown increasingly uncomfortable with the poor fundamental performance in the cosmetics business, where well-known products have come under pressure from falling sales. Recent acquisitions haven't shown immediate signs of causing a turnaround, so some shareholders have to hope that Perelman will either buy them out entirely, or find a different potential purchaser to squeeze more value out of their investment.
Finally, Aaron's posted gains of almost 7% in the wake of its Progressive Leasing unit announcing a deal with Wal-Mart to offer a virtual lease-to-own program at the retail giant. The Progressive Leasing service is already offered at some other retailers, enabling customers to buy big-ticket items even if they would ordinarily get turned down for traditional credit. Aaron's touts that its approvals are based on income and employment, so the hope is that more customers will be able to complete purchases using the Progressive system instead of a typical credit arrangement. For Aaron's, getting Wal-Mart on board as a partner is a nice move, even despite Wal-Mart's own challenges in the recent past.