Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (STAR)
Sure, you could rob a bank to make some cash, but then you’d have to spend money on a disguise, duct tape and a getaway car. Save yourself the hassle and expense by investing in bank stocks instead. Shares of CIBC rallied after Canada’s fifth-largest bank posted second-quarter adjusted earnings of $1.67-billion or $3.59 a share – more than three times higher than a year ago and well above analysts’ expectations. With Canadian banks including CIBC benefiting from lower loan loss provisions and strong capital markets results, there’s never been a better time to go straight.
Abercrombie & Fitch (STAR)
Now that the pandemic is under control in many parts of the U.S., teenagers can finally get back to the important things in life – like hanging out at the mall. Shares of Abercrombie & Fitch jumped after the apparel retailer reported a 61-per-cent increase in sales for the quarter ended May 1, driven by growing digital orders and rebounding customer traffic at its A&F and Hollister stores. Business was so brisk that the company posted a surprise profit of 64 US cents a share, compared with a loss of US$3.90 a year earlier, prompting investors to fill their shopping bags with A&F stock.
Think horror movies are scary? They’re child’s play compared to Cineplex Inc.’s grisly first-quarter results, which included a 96-per-cent plunge in attendance at Canada’s largest cinema chain. But after more than a year of lockdowns and theatre closings, Cineplex investors are betting that the blood-curdling screams could soon be over. The shares have soared about 250 per cent from their October lows as the steady pace of COVID-19 vaccinations raises hopes that pandemic restrictions could soon be lifted. Maybe this movie will have a happy ending after all.
Business quiz! Ovintiv is: a) a winery owned by hockey star Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals; b) the highest-scoring word at the 2019 World Scrabble Championship; c) an oil and gas producer, formerly known as Encana, whose shares surged this week after J.P. Morgan upgraded the stock to “overweight,” calling it “one of the most attractive larger cap upstream companies” because of its “low cost structure and unique torque to all three commodities (oil, gas and [natural gas liquids]).” Answer: c.
Selling used cars can be a lucrative business – if you can find any used cars to sell. Shares of CarLotz Inc. hit the brakes after the company said its corporate vehicle sourcing partner – which accounted for more than 60 per cent of the cars it sold in the first quarter – has “paused consignments to the company.” With auto makers cutting new car production because of a global chip shortage, fleet management companies are finding it harder to upgrade their customers’ vehicles, which is causing the supply of used cars to dry up. Hey CarLotz, there’s an old Trans Am sitting on blocks in my neighbour’s front yard. Make an offer.
A humorous look at the companies that caught our eye, for better or worse, this week
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