There wasn't a huge amount of excitement on Wall Street on Friday, leaving investors mostly seeing modest losses. The economic and political situation around the world still remains uncertain, and investors are struggling with how much risk to take with their portfolios in the short run as they weigh potential rewards depending on the likelihood of certain key events taking place. Yet despite a relatively quiet market, some stocks suffered significant declines. Cronos Group (NASDAQ: CRON), Fiverr International (NYSE: FVRR), and Ashford Hospitality Trust (NYSE: AHT) were among the worst performers. Here's why they did so poorly.
Cronos stays volatile
Shares of Cronos Group fell nearly 6%, continuing their turbulent daily moves in both directions over the past month. Marijuana investors haven't known exactly how to handle the cannabis company, with a couple of reasons contributing to the confusion. First, even with its key partnership with cigarette giant Altria Group, Cronos hasn't seemed to be in a big hurry to make a splash in the consumer products space using Altria's distribution expertise. Also, Cronos hasn't chosen to emphasize production capacity growth to nearly the same extent as its peers. Those who are optimistic about the company's prospects point out that it might well be focusing on entering the U.S. market, both with existing product lines like CBD extracts and with products that could become legal in the future. Today, though, investors seem to be erring on the side of impatience, and that could keep Cronos stock making wild moves for the foreseeable future.
Image source: Cronos Group.
Fiverr gives back ground
Fiverr International stock plunged 21%, giving back a portion of its gains from its initial public offering on Thursday. Fiverr enjoyed a 90% jump when it first came public, soaring from the $21 per share that participants in the IPO paid. Yet some believe that the freelancer services marketplace's stock rose too quickly, and even with the immense size of the gig economy, Fiverr faces competition from other major players in its industry. There have been a lot of successful IPOs recently, and Fiverr isn't the only one to see a slight letdown after a strong first day. More important will be whether the company can sustain its momentum and keep climbing over the long run, and investors today didn't seem to have as much faith in those prospects looking ahead.
Ashford Hospitality makes a dividend cut
Finally, shares of Ashford Hospitality Trust dropped 15%. The real estate investment trust announced that its second-quarter dividend would amount to just $0.06 per share, down by half from its payout for the previous quarter. CEO Douglas Kessler said that the previous payout "has significantly exceeded what we would have needed to distribute from a taxable income standpoint," arguing that the cut "effectively preserves capital for more advantageous purposes." Yet investors didn't like the hit to income that the dividend cut produced, and even though the new payout represents a yield of more than 6%, shareholders seem concerned that there could be more bad news around the corner.
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