Buzz Stocks: LendingClub Corp, Groupon Inc, and Horizon Pharma PLC

Today's stocks to watch include LendingClub Corp (LC), Groupon Inc (GRPN), Horizon Pharma PLC (HZNP)

May 9, 2016 at 10:47 AM
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U.S. stocks are up slightly, as traders keep an eye on June-dated crude oil, and anticipate what officials will have to say after Friday's dreary jobs report.  Among equities in focus today are online loan marketplace LendingClub Corp (NYSE:LC), discount retailer Groupon Inc (NASDAQ:GRPN), and biopharmaceutical stock Horizon Pharma PLC (NASDAQ:HZNP).

  • LC plummeted 25.1% to $5.32 -- and earlier touched an all-time low of $5.22. The sharp fall followed news that LendingClub Corp CEO Renauld Laplanche resigned following an internal investigation that revealed $22 million of near-prime loans was sold to a single investor -- Jefferies, according to sources -- and violated business practices. The news has overshadowed LC's first-quarter earnings report. The stock has lost more than three-quarters of its value since it started trading in December 2014. Bearish bettors have been hot on the stock in recent weeks, with short interest rising 17.2% over the previous two reporting periods. Over 21% of the stock's float is short sold, and it would take 11.4 days of trading, at LC's average daily volume, to cover all of the shorted shares. 

  • GRPN shares are up 3.3% at $4.30, after the online discount retailer said it sold its Breadcrumb point-of-sale system for a minority stake in Upserve, a management assistance software company. Groupon Inc shares were dealt a blow recently, breaching their 200-day moving average amid some post-earnings backlash. GRPN options traders seem more pessimistic than usual, with Groupon Inc's 50-day put/call volume ratio at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) of 0.31 sitting in the 94th percentile of its annual range.

  • HZNP is up 15.9% at $15.54, thanks to an earnings win and a New York Post report indicating the biotech could revive plans to purchase Depomed Inc (NASDAQ:DEPO). Horizon Pharma PLC on Friday came within a chip-shot of a new annual low, and option buyers have been upping the bearish ante of late. HZNP's 50-day ISE/CBOE/PHLX put/call volume ratio of 1.23 is higher than 94% of all other readings from the past year, suggesting options players have had an especially gloomy outlook.

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