Buzz Stocks: Apple Inc., Abercrombie & Fitch Co., and Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc.

Today's stocks to watch in the news include Apple Inc. (AAPL), Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (ANF), and Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc. (OREX)

Aug 30, 2016 at 9:44 AM
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Major indexes appear set to take a breather this morning after Monday's big Wall Street win. Among specific equities in focus are iPhone parent Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), retail stock Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (NYSE:ANF), and biotech Orexigen Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:OREX).

  • AAPL is down 0.6% at $106.19, after the European Union (EU) said Apple Inc. could owe as much as $14.5 billion in back taxes after its tax arrangement with Ireland was found illegal -- a decision CEO Tim Cook said the company will appeal. The speculation first hit the Street yesterday, as rumors also swirled around the firm's upcoming Sept. 7 event -- where many expect the newest iteration of the iPhone may be revealed. The stock is now seated just above its year-to-date breakeven mark, and AAPL could be in more trouble if the overwhelming optimism among analysts should begin to unwind. At the moment, roughly 86% of brokerage firms tracking the stock rate it a "buy" or better.

  • ANF has plunged 17% at the open at $19.06, after the company reported its 14th consecutive quarterly drop in sales, with Executive Chairman Arthur Martinez saying the company expects "flagship and tourist locations will continue to weigh on business" for the remainder of the year. Traders had been betting on a significant post-earnings swing for the stock -- which was already off 18% year-to-date heading into today's trading -- and it appears most were hoping for a move to the downside. Not only have options traders been unusually put-skewed of late, but short interest also accounts for more than 21% of Abercrombie & Fitch Co.'s total float. At the stock's typical daily volume, it would take a full nine sessions to cover all these pessimistic positions.

  • OREX is 15.6% higher at $4.37, on news the company has signed an agreement with Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc (NYSE:VRX) to commercialize and distribute its obesity drug, Contrave, in Canada. An extended rally today would help Orexigen Therapeutics begin to win back some of its 75% year-to-date losses, with the shares fresh off a record low of $3.18, hit earlier this month. The shares have been running into tough resistance at their 20-week moving average of late -- a trendline they haven't topped on a closing basis since May 2015. Unsurprisingly, the underperformer hasn't seen much love on the Street, where all three analyst tracking OREX recommend a "hold" or "sell."

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