Schaeffer's Trading Floor Blog

Highs & Lows: KiOR and Shanda Games

KIOR rallied to an all-time high today, while GAME sank to a new record low

by 9/29/2011 2:29 PM
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Despite spending the bulk of the session comfortably north of breakeven, more stocks have tagged new lows than new highs today. On the NYSE, just five equities have hit fresh 52-week peaks, compared to 112 securities at annual lows. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq reports just four new highs, along with 150 new lows. Among the bearish majority today is Shanda Games Limited (GAME - 4.24) , while KiOR Inc. (KIOR - 23.85) is among the bullish elite.

Beginning with GAME, the shares fell to an all-time nadir of $4.24 today, after analysts at Macquarie initiated coverage with an "underperform" rating and a $4 price target. From a longer-term perspective, the online gaming company has surrendered more than 30% in 2011, with the most recent leg of its downtrend underscored by pressure from its 10-week moving average.

From a contrarian perspective, though, GAME could be at risk for additional negative analyst attention. According to Zacks, the stock sports six "buy" or better endorsements, compared to four "holds" and not a single "sell." Plus, Thomson Reuters pegs the consensus 12-month price target on the equity at $7.07 -- representing a steep premium of almost 67% to GAME's new low of $4.24.

On the other hand, Wall Street freshman KIOR has muscled its way to a fresh all-time high of $23.85, thanks to an upbeat analyst note. Specifically, Deutsche Bank highlighted signs of an emerging recovery for the clean-tech sector over the next 12 months, launching coverage of KIOR with a "buy" rating and a $20 price target. The stock is now trading at a premium of roughly 59% to its IPO price of $15.

What's more, KIOR could extend its recent climb in the event of a massive bearish exodus. After skyrocketing by 44.6% during the past month, short interest now accounts for about 24.4% of the stock's total available float. In fact, at the equity's average pace of trading, it would take around 46 sessions to buy back these bearish bets -- pointing to an ample supply of sideline cash to fuel further gains.

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