The stock market has remained in a holding pattern all week, as
traders wait to see what kind of a compromise Congress and the
White House can reach over federal spending as the August 2nd
deadline looms large.
While the major small cap stock indexes don't show it, there were
plenty of big moves Thursday as investors found positive signs
spread among the ruins. Three of the top five performers all hit
52-week highs, and a management change helped the day's top small
cap stock, Universal Forest Products, post a healthy 21 percent
increase despite a 69 percent profit drop in the second quarter.
The Russell 2000 Index lost 1.63 percent in value and the Standard
& Poor's Small Cap 600 dropped a similar 1.64 percent. While
the Nasdaq Stock Market dropped 1.22 percent, two other major U.S.
stock indexes held their ground a little better - the Dow Jones
Industrial Average closed 0.44 percent lower, and the Standard
& Poor's 500 was off 0.67 percent.
Thursday's Top Performing Small Cap Stocks (Data provided by
Universal Forest Products (Nasdaq: UFPI)
: The supplier of wood and wood-alternative products to home
centers and the modular housing and other construction markets
lifted the paper and wood products sector. Shares rose despite a 69
percent earnings drop on weak retail sales, but it announced a new
CEO was coming in.
: The maker of home accessories and fragrances climbed to a 52-week
high after Chairman and CEO Robert Goergen said in a regulatory
filing that he and other insiders now own 37 percent of outstanding
shares, which they purchased because they viewed them as
Ultratech (Nasdaq: UTEK)
: The chip-equipment maker shot up after several analyst reports
indicated that they believe the company is well-positioned in the
sagging semiconductor supplier sector, especially in emerging
markets. Q2 financial results are due out next Thursday morning.
Glu Mobile (Nasdaq: GLUU)
: The maker of games for mobile phones hit a new 52-week high as it
continued to ride the wave created by Electronic Arts' $1.3 billion
acquisition of competitor and Plants vs. Zombies developer PopCap.
GLUU is up 400 percent in the past year.
Jazz Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: JAZZ)
: Shares of the developer of treatments for neurological and
psychiatric disorders reached a 52-week high. Piper Jaffray
initiated coverage with an overweight rating, crediting the
"significant pricing power" potential that narcolepsy drug Xyrem