Market Overview

These Stocks Are Cranking the Volume Up to Eleven


A metric that goes overlooked by most investors is trading volume, which measures how many shares of a stock are changing hands in a given time period.  As the old adage goes, ‘volume precedes price’, and in most cases it is possible to profit by keeping an eye on this activity. 

Below are some stocks that have been cranking the volume way up this week, and in case you were wondering, the title is an eighties-era ode to This is Spinal Tap

Benihana, Inc. (NASDAQ: BNHN) has been all over the news this week, as it was recently announced the private equity group Angelo, Gordon & Co.’s would acquire the Japanese-style restaurant chain.  Yesterday, shares of BNHN bounced over 21.20 percent to rest just over $16 a share.  Simultaneously, the stock saw its trading volume balloon by over 8,000 percent to a level not seen since its IPO days. 

The other major mover yesterday was software maker Ariba, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARBA), which was acquired by SAP AG (NYSE: SAP).  Before this deal, speculators had already pushed the stock up slightly, though the official announcement opened the floodgates.  By 4:00 PM EST, shares of ARBA had closed at $44.87, almost 20 percent higher than they began the day at, as volume jumped by 1,600 percent.  Interestingly, this stock dropped below $40 at one point in after hours trading, so this situation will be worth monitoring further.

SciQuest, Inc. (NASDAQ: SQI) is a small-cap software company that helps its customers maximize supply chain efficiency.  Yesterday, shares of SQI gained 3.62 percent riding unusually high volume four times that of average levels.

Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALXN) rose 4.26 percent yesterday to close over $92 a share, with trading volume up over 300 percent.  While ALXN has made no major announcements, the company was in the headlines a few weeks ago posting super-impressive earnings, which had many analysts raising their price targets to the $100 range.

Urban Outfitters, Inc. (NASDAQ: URBN) reported Q1 earnings yesterday that exceeded the Street’s expectations, and its stock rose over 7 percent on a volume increase of 220 percent.  At just over $28 a share, URBN is trading in the middle of its 52-week range.

Nordson Corp (NASDAQ: NDSN) saw an 8 percent jump in anticipation of its Q2 earnings release, though the company failed to hit EPS and revenue estimates.  Volume rose over 250 percent yesterday, and after hours volume was up by a similar margin.

Auxilium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: AUXL) improved its revenue and earnings guidance earlier in the week, and investors are taking notice, as the stock’s volume was 200 percent over average levels on Monday and Tuesday.  Shares of AUXL have risen by 3.55 percent over this time and currently rest around $19 a share.

Charter Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: CHTR) is a cable provider that has already seen its share price improve by over 13 percent since the start of 2012.  Yesterday, shares of CHTR were in the green slightly, though volume doubled to a level not seen since January.  It remains to be seen what this means for investors holding CHTR, but if the stock’s past volume-price relationship is any indication, further gains may be on the horizon.

Tesla Motors, Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA), a company on the forefront of electric car innovation, saw its shares bounce 7 percent yesterday to eclipse $30 a piece, with volume hitting 79 percent above average levels.  Some of this bullish action may have been the result of a formal announcement regarding the delivery date of TSLA’s newest model.

Check back at Benzinga for regular updates on which companies are cranking the volume up to eleven.  Oh, and watch This is Spinal Tap in the meantime.

Follow me on Twitter at @mjakemann

Posted-In: Long Ideas Short Ideas Markets Movers Tech Trading Ideas Best of Benzinga


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