Some of the tech stocks that have been bid up to the stratosphere lately with the help of retail investors are coming back to earth a little today.
Palantir Technologies (PLTR) - Get Palantir Technologies Inc. Class A Report is among the hardest-hit names: The data-mining/analytics software firm is down 12.6% after Morgan Stanley downgraded shares to Underweight.
“With PLTR up 155% since [its] listing with very little change in the fundamental story, the risk/reward paradigm shifts decidedly negative for the shares,” wrote analyst Keith Weiss. As a quick Twitter search of its stock symbol demonstrates, Palantir has become a retail favorite since going public in late September, thanks in part to hopes that it will win more large government contracts under a Biden Administration.
Meanwhile, electric car and clean energy plays have bounced from their morning lows, but select names are still seeing large declines. Workhorse Group (WKHS) - Get Workhorse Group Inc. Report is down 21.9%, Lordstown Motors (RIDE) - Get Lordstown Motors Corp. Class A Report is down 6.8% and FuelCell Energy (FCEL) - Get FuelCell Energy, Inc. Report is down 18.6%. Tesla (TSLA) - Get Tesla Inc Report is down 2.7%, reducing its year-to-date gains to a “mere” 580%.
Along with Palantir, a number of other enterprise software names are moving lower today. Salesforce.com (CRM) - Get salesforce.com, inc. Report and Box’s (BOX) - Get Box, Inc. Class A Report earnings reports appear to be playing roles.
Salesforce is down 6.9% after posting October quarter results after the close on Tuesday, issuing guidance for its next two quarters and its next fiscal year, and announcing a $25 billion-plus deal -- widely rumored to be in the works -- to buy Slack Technologies (WORK) - Get Slack Technologies, Inc. Class A Report. While Salesforce’s top-line numbers (both its results and guidance) were moderately above consensus estimates, pre-earnings expectations were high, and its January quarter EPS guidance was below consensus.
Box, which has been facing stiff competition from Microsoft (MSFT) - Get Microsoft Corporation Report and others, is down 6.8% after it slightly beat October quarter estimates on Wednesday morning, but issued weaker-than-expected January quarter sales guidance.
Sales data software provider ZoomInfo (ZI) - Get ZoomInfo Technologies Inc Report, which recently raised more than $550 million through a stock offering, is down 7.6%. Automotive software firm Cerence (CRNC) - Get Cerence Inc. Report is down 7.8%, AI software provider Veritone (VERI) - Get Veritone, Inc. Report is down 4.2%, bill-payment software provider Bill.com (BILL) - Get Bill.com Holdings, Inc. Report is down 4% and project management software firm Upland Software (UPLD) - Get Upland Software, Inc. Report is down 7.2%.
The selloff in high-multiple software names comes as cloud data warehousing leader Snowflake (SNOW) - Get Snowflake, Inc. Class A Report -- a company that has an exceptionally high valuation even by enterprise software standards -- gets set to report after the bell. Snowflake is down 1.2% in Wednesday trading, but still up more than 150% from its $120 September IPO price.