New CEO Named at Starbucks, Stock Inches Higher

It's been a tumultuous time for the coffee giant

Digital Content Manager
Sep 2, 2022 at 9:09 AM
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Starbucks Corporation (NASDAQ:SBUX) just named Laxman Narasimhan as its new CEO. Most recently, Narasimhan was CEO of Reckitt -- the company that owns Lysol and Durex -- and announced earlier on Thursday that he will step down from this role to join Starbucks in October. Howard Schultz will keep serving as interim CEO until April, however, and will continue to serve on the board once Narasimhan takes his place. Schultz has called Narasimhan a "world-class leader." 

The stock is inching higher in response, last seen up 0.6% at $85.89. It's been a tumultuous time for Starbucks, with more than 200 of its stores seeking to unionize under Workers United, and the equity is reflecting some of this volatility. The stock's most recent rally off its mid-June rout ran into some trouble near the 180-day moving average, while the $90 region has also served as a ceiling since March. Year-to-date, SBUX has shed roughly 27%. 

Analysts remain split, with 12 calling SBUX a "strong buy," and 13 saying "hold." Meanwhile, short interest is seeing a dramatic drop, losing 22% in the last two reporting periods to make up a slim 1.2% of the stock's available float. 

Options traders, on the other hand, are firmly bearish. At the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX), the stock sports a 10-day put/call volume ratio of 1.16, which sits higher than 98% of readings from the past 12 months. This means puts are being picked up at a much quicker-than-usual clip of late. 


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