EDU Plummets on Potential Non-Profit Law

In response, J.P. Morgan Securities downgraded the stock

Assistant Editor
Jul 23, 2021 at 10:17 AM
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The shares of New Oriental Education & Technology Group Inc (NYSE:EDU) are taking a nosedive into penny stock territory, after news broke that China is considering making companies that offer tutoring services on school curriculum go non-profit, affecting a vast industry. EDU is down 65.6% at $2.20, firmly into the short sell restricted list and a far cry from its Feb. 16  record peak of $19.97. 

EDU has plunged on the charts since the start of May, guided lower by the descending 20-day moving average. Today's steep drop, however, has the equity at its lowest level in roughly six years. Coincidentally, the equity was down 65.6% year-to-date heading into Friday -- the same deficit it's already experiencing in today's session. 

In response, J.P. Morgan Securities downgraded the stock to "underweight" from "overweight," with a large price-target cut to $3.50 from $19. There is plenty of room for further bear notes, as coming into today, four of the five analysts in coverage carried a "strong buy" rating on EDU. Plus, the 12-month consensus price target of $15.84 is a drastic premium to current levels. 

The options pits have been similarly bullish. EDU's 50-day call/put volume ratio of 3.50 at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) stands higher than all but 1% of readings from this past year. This means long calls have been picked up at a much faster-than-usual rate in the last 10 weeks. 

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