Retail Stock Rallies on Expanded Amazon Partnership

Morgan Stanley thinks QCOM is a "key enabler" of 5G technology

by Karee Venema

Published on Apr 23, 2019 at 2:18 PM

It's a record-setting session on Wall Street today, with the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) poised for all-time closing highs. Among individual stocks making notable moves are retailer Kohl's Corporation (NYSE:KSS), semiconductor name Qualcomm, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM), and integrated circuit specialist Silicon Motion Technology Corp. (NASDAQ:SIMO). Here's a quick look at what's moving the shares of KSS, QCOM, and SIMO.

Kohl's Stock Targeted for Premium-Selling Options Strategy

Kohl's stock is up 9.2% to trade at $73.67, after the retailer announced an expanded partnership with Amazon (AMZN). Beginning in July, any items purchased on Amazon.com can be returned at all 1,159 Kohl's stores in the U.S., versus the 100 locations that have offered the service since it launched in 2017.

Today's pop has the shares bouncing sharply from the $66-$68 region, home to their year-to-date breakeven level and a number of key trendlines, including the 50-day, 80-day, and 200-day moving averages. However, KSS stock is running out of steam near $74, which is a 61.8% Fibonacci retracement of its November-through-December drop, and contained a breakout attempt earlier this month.

Options traders are blasting Kohl's, too, with 27,000 calls and 25,000 puts on the tape -- 15 times the average intraday amount and volume closing in on a new annual high. It looks like one speculator may be initiating a short strangle with the May 70 put and 75 call. If this is the case, they expect KSS stock to stay between the two sold strikes through May options expiration.

Upgraded Qualcomm Stock Hits New High

Morgan Stanley upgraded Qualcomm stock to "overweight" from "equal weight," and raised its price target by $40 to $95, a nearly 16% premium to last night's close. The brokerage firm cited an attractive risk/reward setup in the wake of a legal settlement with Apple (AAPL), and called QCOM a "key enabler" of next-generation 5G networks.

In reaction, the tech stock has shot up 5.2% to trade at $86.20, earlier hitting a 19-year high of $86.59. Qualcomm shares are now pacing for an April gain of 51%, which will mark its best monthly advance since December 1999.

Speculators are positioning for even more upside from QCOM stock. Amid heavy trading -- 362,000 options have traded already, four times what's typically seen at this point -- buy-to-open activity has been detected at the weekly 4/26 85-strike call and June 95 call. 

Silicon Motion Technology Earns Rare Bear Note

Silicon Motion Technology, on the other hand, was downgraded to "underweight" from "equal weight" at Morgan Stanley. Analyst Charlie Chan expects projected growth in the solid-state drive (SSD) controller integrated circuit (IC) processor space will be countered by potential IC market-share loss for the firm.

Despite pacing for their worst day since Jan. 22, SIMO stock is finding support at a trendline connecting higher lows since January. Just below here is the equity's 80-day moving average -- located at $39.21 -- which hasn't been breached on a daily closing basis since Jan. 29. Year-to-date, the shares are still up 15.4%.

Most analysts remain bullish on Silicon Motion Technology. At last night's close, seven of nine covering brokerages maintained a "buy" or better rating -- and not a single "sell" on the books. Plus, the average 12-month price target sits comfortably above at $43.


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