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The Globe’s stars and dogs for the week Add to ...

A humorous look at the companies that caught our eye, for better or worse, this week



Business quiz! Shares of Manulife tumbled this week because:

a) The company was hit by a massive spike in dental claims after agreeing to be the “official insurance provider of the NHL”;

b) The company was kicked out of China for “spying”;

c) Fourth-quarter profit plunged more than 60 per cent as sinking energy prices hammered the value of Manulife’s oil and gas investments, casting doubt on its 2016 earnings targets.

Answer: c.

MFC (TSX), $16.31, down $2.47 or 13.2% over week


Nothing fills your gut like seven or eight slices of double-cheese, pepperoni, bacon and mushroom pizza. And nothing fills your wallet like a dividend increase from the company that made the pizza: Shares of Boston Pizza were all hot and gooey after the restaurant chain hiked its distribution by 6.2 per cent, helped by higher takeout and delivery sales driven by promotion of its online ordering system. Yes, it’s okay to drink the dipping sauce.

BPF.UN (TSX), $17.41, up 72¢ or 4.3% over week


Don’t let the su-u-un go down on me …” Too late, SolarCity investors: The sun already went down on you. Shares of the largest U.S. rooftop solar-power company were plunged into darkness after SolarCity missed its own installations guidance for the fourth quarter, hurt by delays affecting commercial projects. With Nevada raising fees and cutting credits to solar users – and other states also rethinking their policies – Solar City’s future is suddenly cloudy.

SCTY (Nasdaq), $17.38 (U.S.), down $12.19 or 41.2% over week


“Preferred” shares? Most investors would have preferred never to have gotten involved with these pooches. Seduced by seemingly juicy yields and the hope of capital gains if interest rates rise, bargain hunters were recently snatching up rate-reset preferred shares with both hands – only to watch Canada’s five-year bond yield sink to less than 0.5 per cent this week, taking the rate-reset market down with it. Investors would prefer a punch in the nose.

CPD (TSX), $11.21, down 56¢ or 4.8% over week


Redknee Solutions sells billing software to wireless providers, utilities and other clients, but it’s apparently having trouble persuading its own potential customers to pay up. Citing a period of “typical lumpiness” in software-licence revenue that was “exacerbated by several purchase decision delays,” the company posted a 20-per-cent drop in quarterly revenue as it swung to a loss of $4.3-million (U.S.) or 4 cents a share. The stock just blew out a knee.

RKN (TSX), $1.49, down $1.18 or 44.2% over week

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Follow on Twitter: @johnheinzl

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