A Polish protective-glove maker has seen its stock explode 6,700% this year as the pandemic fuels a boom in sales

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a close up of a child s hand: A woman puts on silicon gloves during the pandemic at Krakow, Poland on October 9th, 2020. Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty Images


© Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty Images
A woman puts on silicon gloves during the pandemic at Krakow, Poland on October 9th, 2020. Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty Images

  • A Polish glove-maker’s stock has risen 6,700% this year, as the COVID-19 pandemic has fueled a boom in its sales.
  • Mercator Medical crossed a 7 billion zloty ($1.8 billion) market valuation for the first time after its stock surged 13% on Tuesday, Bloomberg first reported.
  • Mercator’s third-quarter net income leapt 70% to about 356 million zloty ($92 million) compared to just 1.3 million zloty ($337,922) a year ago.
  • Poland has so far reported about 142,000 coronavirus cases and 3,217 fatalities.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Shares in a little-known Polish company that makes disposable medical devices and personal protective equipment have surged 6,700% this year, making it by far the best performer on Warsaw’s WIG blue-chip index. 

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Mercator Medical’s shares surged over 30 times in value in the earlier half of the year, when the initial effects of the coronavirus pandemic spread across the world, boosting its sales.

As new infections in the country have crossed the peak levels of the first wave, Mercator’s market value has doubled, making it one of the 20 most valuable stocks in the 318-strong WIG index.

A 13% jump in its stock on Tuesday, first reported by Bloomberg, bringing its market value above 7 billion zloty ($1.8 billion) for the first time.

Mercator’s third-quarter net income jumped 70% to about 356 million zloty ($92 million), compared with just 1.3 million zloty ($337,922) a year ago, according to Bloomberg.

The glove-maker’s sales jumped over four-fold year-on-year.

Poland has one of the lower infection and fatality rates among larger European economies, having so far reported about 142,000 coronavirus cases and 3,217 deaths, according to data

Loop Industries Drops – Hindenburg Makes Claims, Shorts Stock

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Shares of Loop Industries  (LOOP) – Get Report lost a third of their market value on Tuesday after the activist investment group Hindenburg published a report lambasting the plastics-recycling company and said it took a short position.

The investment firm said it interviewed former employees, competitors, industry experts and company partners as part of its investigation and concluded that Loop is “smoke and mirrors with no viable technology.”

Loop, Terrebonne, Quebec, didn’t immediately return a request for comment. 

Former employees told Hindenburg that Loop operated two labs, one reserved for its “two twenty-something lead scientist brothers and their father” and one run by rank-and-file scientists who were unable to replicate results. 

The investment firm said that a Loop employee told Hindenburg that scientists were pressured by Chief Executive Daniel Solomita to “lie about the results of the company’s process internally. We have obtained internal documents and photographs to support their claims.”

The report also alleges that to help raise Loop’s startup capital, Solomita hired a convict who had pleaded guilty to stock manipulation.

Loop has claimed to have developed a patented proprietary technology that breaks down a common plastic, PET, using “products purchased from the local hardware store,” Hindenburg said.

“In other words, the company claims to have discovered how to turn worthless trash into pure gold, a feat that multi-billion chemical companies such as DuPont,  (DD) – Get Report Dow Chemical,  (DOW) – Get Report and 3M  (MMM) – Get Report have been unable to achieve on a large scale despite years of efforts,” Hindenburg said in its note. 

Loop Industries shares at last check fell 34% to $7.69. 

Analyst Says Micron Technology Stock Now Has 20% Upside

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Are Micron Technology (NASDAQ: MU) shares about to rise by nearly 20%? Analyst Sidney Ho of Deutsche Bank thinks so; he upgraded his recommendation on the stock from neutral to buy, with a $60 per share price target (the company’s most recent closing level was $50.68).

Ho believes that while the market for the DRAM, or dynamic random access memory, chips that the company specializes in will hit a low in the fourth quarter of this year, a rebound is in store. In his view, recent data indicate that demand for such products has risen in both the mobile and PC server segments. This should result in price increases in Q1 of next year.

Detail of a circuit board.

Image source: Getty Images.

Micron’s business has suffered lately because of two factors. The first is the coronavirus pandemic. As with other businesses throughout the global economy, the company has been badly affected by softening demand from clients looking to cut costs.

The second is the loss of a major customer for the company, Huawei. American companies have been prohibited from selling chips to the Chinese tech giant. This has hit Micron particularly hard, as roughly 10% of the revenue in its latest reported quarter came from the Asian company.

As a result, Micron proffered very cautious guidance for the Q1 Ho is optimistic about. The company forecast its non-GAAP (adjusted) per-share earnings will land at $0.40 to $0.54 for the quarter — very short of the average $0.66 estimated by analysts.

On Monday, Micron shares essentially moved in concert with the broader stock market, rising by just under 1.6%.

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China Stock Market Set To Add To Its Winnings

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(RTTNews) – The China stock market has finished higher in back-to-back sessions, surging more than 140 points or 4.4 percent along the way. The Shanghai Composite Index now sits just beneath the 3,360-point plateau and it’s got a positive lead again for Tuesday’s trade.

The global forecast for the Asian markets is upbeat, with tech shares expected to lead the way higher. The European markets were mixed and the U.S. bourse were broadly higher and the Asian markets are tipped to follow the latter lead.

The SCI finished sharply higher on Monday following gains from the financials, properties and oil and insurance companies.

For the day, the index soared 86.39 points or 2.64 percent to finish at 3,358.47 after trading between 3,286.11 and 3,359.15. The Shenzhen Composite Index surged 73.40 points or 3.31 percent to end at 2,289.36.

Among the actives, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China climbed 1.02 percent, while Bank of China collected 0.62 percent, China Construction Bank jumped 1.47 percent, China Merchants Bank rallied 3.81 percent, Bank of Communications advanced 1.10 percent, China Life Insurance soared 4.48 percent, Ping An Insurance surged 3.80 percent, PetroChina gained 1.21 percent, China Petroleum and Chemical (Sinopec) added 0.76 percent, China Shenhua Energy increased 0.97 percent, Gemdale spiked 2.40 percent, Poly Developments accelerated 2.30 percent and China Vanke gathered 1.00 percent.

The lead from Wall Street is broadly positive as stocks moved sharply higher on Monday, extending the strong upward move seen in recent sessions and sending the major averages to their best closing levels in a month.

The Dow jumped 250.62 points or 0.88 percent to finish at 28,837.52, while the NASDAQ surged 296.32 points or 2.56 percent to end at 11,876.26 and the S&P 500 perked 57.09 points or 1.64 percent to close at 3,534.22.

Technology stocks led the

S&P 500 Gains 57 Points Ahead of Earnings, Huge Apple and Amazon Events, Ford Stock Gets an Upgrade

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The S&P 500 Index (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC) gained nearly 1.7% on Oct. 12, a huge day for the index that makes up some 80% of the entire U.S. stock market’s value. With the exception of materials, every sector closed higher today, but tech did the heavy lifting. The Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF gained 3%. Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) gained 6.2% today, while Amazon.com (NASDAQ: AMZN) closed up 4.5% and Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL)(NASDAQ: GOOG) and Facebook (NASDAQ: FB), picked up 4%. Combined, that’s $7.4 trillion in market cap gaining more than 4.5% on average.

Why the big day? A combination of factors, including Wall Street analyst upgrades, optimism that Congress could reach a deal on stimulus, and high hopes as earnings season gets under way — not to mention a couple of big events coming up for Apple and Amazon. Shares of auto giant Ford (NYSE: F) joined Apple in pacing the S&P, following an analyst upgrade.

Bull standing in a field.

Image source: Getty Images.

Tech comes roaring back

Tech stocks peaked as a group in early September, when the S&P 500 reached an all-time high. Over the three weeks that followed, the index would fall almost 10%, with tech stocks falling by far the most. All four tech giants above fell more than 15% over the next three weeks:

XLK Chart

XLK data by YCharts

But since Sept. 23, these same stocks have shown some life, gaining back a good portion of those losses, all up more than 11% in the past two-plus weeks.

Today’s big gains are the product of a few things. For Apple, the combination of an analyst upgrade and very high hopes ahead of Apple’s iPhone event tomorrow has investors coming back to the tech giant en masse. Today’s gains push Apple’s market cap back to the $2 trillion mark.

Amazon’s