BANG Stocks

BANG Stocks

9 min read

Have you ever heard of BANG stocks? They’re made up of four companies everyone is familiar with: Blackberry, AMC, Nokia, and GameStop. AMC and GameStop have been making huge headlines in the news throughout 2021 with their short squeezing and epic battle between retail traders and hedge funds. But what about the other 2 stocks that comprise this grouping?

Chart by TradingView

Much like FAANG stocks, we now have BANG stocks. Thousands of individual traders made hefty profits from the GameStop rally earlier this year. Subsequently, many of them looked for the next potential opportunity to make money. This was when a new group of stocks called BANG stocks came into the limelight and popularized more among retail traders than traditional stock analysts and cable news pundits.

The term BANG stocks is just a fun way to refer to the four companies. They are Blackberry (NYSE: $BB), AMC Entertainment (NYSE: $AMC), Nokia (NYSE: $NOK), and GameStop (NYSE: $GME). These stocks have already made heft gains after their names were circulated across different social media groups, including WSB.

Investors on WSB have been trying to spark a rally in BANG stocks and somewhat succeeded in their efforts. We’ll briefly discuss the performance of BANG stocks to evaluate how far they can go in the coming quarters.

BlackBerry Ltd ($BB)

BlackBerry stock has rallied several times this year, primarily due to WSB Reddit-driven frenzy. The stock just had another rally. BB shares jumped more than 30 percent during the past week. However, there was no major news behind the latest rally.

BANG stocks, including BlackBerry, have been highly volatile since the price is usually fueled by WSB investors. Therefore, those looking to buy BB stock for any short-term gain should take this into consideration and invest at their own risk.

BlackBerry was once a top smartphone brand. However, it couldn’t maintain its leading position after iPhone and several Android devices took over the global smartphone market.

Meanwhile, the company expanded its software and services business under the leadership of CEO John Chen, who wanted to strengthen the company’s position in the enterprise security space. The efforts to establish itself as a leading software company have somewhat turned fruitful.

For instance, BlackBerry succeeded in introducing its QNX technology in vehicles. QNX, a real-time operating system, is now part of millions of smart cars around the world. Some investors think that BlackBerry’s technology will be a critical part of autonomous cars in the future.

The company has already inked deals with several vehicle manufacturers to integrate QNX in their upcoming models. In short, things can dramatically change for BlackBerry in the coming years.

AMC Entertainment Holdings ($AMC)

The Covid-19 pandemic has hurt movie theater chains. AMC cinemas remained closed for most of 2020. Their stock lost more than 70 percent of its value last year.

AMC started 2021 at around $2. Its share price gradually improved during the first quarter as the company reopened its theaters with limited capacity.

Surprisingly, they gained massive value during the last week of May following a mention on the WSB forum. WSB members made the #SaveAMC hashtag viral on different social media websites.

AMC stock price went from $13.68 on May 24 to $62.55 on June 2; a surge of more than 300 percent in less than ten days. Retail investors on WSB accumulated AMC shares in large quantities; forcing hedge funds to close their short positions. As a result, AMC stock gained massive value over the past couple of weeks.

AMC capitalized on the inflated stock price by selling 8.5 million shares on June 2 for $230.5 million. The move sent AMC shares down nearly 18 percent in the previous trading session.

Nevertheless, AMC shares are still up more than 2100 percent on a year-to-date basis. The 52-week range of the stock is $1.91-$72.62, while its market value is hovering around $24.5 billion.

Like the rest of BANG stocks, AMC shares are also highly volatile. Trading was halted several times over the last week as retail investors bought the stock in large volume. Despite the recent rally, industry experts believe that AMC stock should be less than $5.

The latest AMC trading frenzy is another example of individual investors trying to pump the prices of low-valued stocks by collaborating on platforms like Reddit and Twitter. A lot of the motivation for retail traders buying $AMC comes from their mission to hurt professional investment firms that have bets again such firms in the hope of making money when they fail. There is very much an us versus them mentality, especially on Fintwit.

Nokia Corp ($NOK)

Finnish company Nokia started operating as a paper mill way back in 1865. The company has revamped itself several times over its decades-long journey. NOK stock also benefitted from the retail trading frenzy that started earlier this year.

However, the gains made by the company are relatively lower than the rest of BANG stocks. Nokia shares have jumped nearly 40 percent so far in 2021. The surge isn’t a reflection of any major achievement.  

Like BlackBerry, Nokia was also a leading cell phone maker. Their phones were indestructible. However, years of losses forced it to sell its handset business to Microsoft in 2014. Sadly, the world may never have durable phones like Nokia’s again. All of the company’s effort is now focused on strengthening its network business.

As a part of those efforts, Nokia acquired Alcatel-Lucent in 2016 to expand its telecommunication equipment services operations.

Nokia has so far struggled to stay competitive in the 5G market. Apparently due to its weaker 5G portfolio. Its financial results failed to impress investors last year.

The company blamed lower demand for its network equipment for the feeble performance. Nevertheless, Nokia has inked deals with companies such as T-Mobile and Google as a part of its broader strategy of becoming a leader in the 5G space. Moving forward, Nokia can return a good value to investors in the longer run, but investors may need to be extremely patient. Investing in the stock for a short-term gain is a riskier bet as more eyes and momentum are currently focused elsewhere.

GameStop Corp ($GME)

GameStop was the original stock to kick off the BANG stocks craze initiated by the WSB saga. It’s a leading videogame retailer operating primarily in the United States, Canada, and Europe. The company was losing money before the start of the pandemic. The global health crisis made things even worse. This was mainly due to store closures that many brick and mortar businesses suffered in 2020.

However, GameStop stock enjoyed a massive surge earlier this year after millions of investors on WSB purchased its shares to exploit few big hedge funds. In turn, forcing them to close their short positions. The two most famous funds to lose money were Melvin Capital and Citron Research who is quite famous for publishing its short positions on Twitter.

GME stock climbed more than 1200 percent so far this year. The GME lovers on WSB believe that GameStop can change things around by transforming itself into an e-commerce company. Since January, most of them have been “diamond hands” holding their stakes in the company. They’re expecting the stock’s price to rise further in the coming quarters.

Meanwhile, industry experts believe that GameStop doesn’t own any hardware or content intellectual property. Therefore, making its business less durable in the longer run. The company generates most of its revenue by selling gaming consoles and gaming disks. However, console makers like Sony have started adopting a direct-to-consumer model. This is besides launching digital-only consoles that enable users to play games without inserting a game disk into the console. GameStop appears to have some work to do if it wants to flourish in the future.

Where Will BANG Stocks Go From Here?

The U.S. stock market has experienced some unexpected things over the last year. An increasing number of people turned towards online communities focusing on stock tips following the Covid-19 pandemic. Many people jumped into the stock market in 2020 for the very first time. Most of those newbie investors solely rely on trading tutorials across different social media platforms to make investment decisions.

Communities and groups on famous social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter, StockTwits, and Reddit, have fueled retail trading in recent months. One of those groups, named WallStreetBets, on Reddit was behind the crazy rally of GameStop stock earlier this year. Even if you don’t trade, you heard about it. Millions of small investors on WallStreetBets (WSB) pumped the stock price of GameStop to new highs. Doing so severely hurting few big hedge funds that had a short position in the stock. They had to buy back the stock to cover their positions. To many new investors who just realized that “Evil” shorts are often the cause of their stock dropping, the sound of hedge funds losing millions or billions was music to their ears.

WSB members usually bet on companies with lower share prices and lower trading volume. It’s relatively easier to accumulate large stakes in those stocks and push their prices higher by saying “I like the stock” online. The stocks are usually picked by expert group members and then promoted across multiple platforms.. These stocks are usually relatively undervalued but have near-term catalysts that can boost their business and lift their share prices. 

Bottom Line

Financial experts have warned individuals to avoid investing in stocks whose prices are artificially inflated. They believe it’s a highly risky approach. And people can lose their money by following the herd. People were posting on social media that GameStop would hit $1,000 by the end of January. We’ve seen how that’s turned out.

However, retail investors apparently avoid such warnings and continue to make risky bets. The trend has given small investors the power to move markets. Some financial experts are even calling for regulatory changes following unrest in the stock market. Moving forward, it’s impossible to predict where BANG stocks will go from here. But one thing’s for sure. Stocks will stay volatile for a while. If you’re looking for a tool that gives you a fundamental edge, look no further than TipRanks, a quality tool that analyzes multiple data points and helps guide you in and out of investments and trades.

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