Cognizant Technology Solutions (CTSH) - Get Report plunged by double digits Friday, a day when the broader markets gained, following disclosures it is conducting an investigation into potential violations of the federal anti-foreign corruption act. Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) - Get Report continued to gain and Zynga (ZNGA) - Get Report edged higher following positive events Thursday.
Cognizant, an IT outsourcing company, announced in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing that it was conducting a probe into its business, specifically "whether certain payments relating to facilities in India were made improperly and in possible violation of the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and other applicable laws. The investigation is being conducted under the oversight of the Audit Committee, with the assistance of outside counsel, and is currently focused on a small number of company-owned facilities."
In making this disclosure, Cognizant announced President Gordon Coburn has resigned from the company and is being replaced by Rajeev "Raj" Mehta, former Cognizant chief executive of IT Services. Mehta has held other executive roles at Cognizant during the 20 years he has been with the company.
Cognizant fell 13.3% to close the day at $47.71.
Advanced Micro Devices jumped sharply, adding to gains it made the previous day when a Wells Fargo analyst report pointed the prospect of the chip maker taking market share away from rival Nvidia (NVDA) - Get Report in the high-end graphics chip arena, according to a Barron'sreport.
Wells Fargo believes AMD's Polaris chips could rival Nvidia's Pascal products and that AMD may be able to "gain further unit share in the graphics card market in the second half of 2016 and possibly through 2017, from a low base."
Wells, however, continues to rate AMD as underperform. Over the past five days, AMD has risen from $6.32 a share on Monday to close at $6.91 on Friday, up 3.6%.
"Gerard's 25 years of financial experience and deep understanding of the games, media and technology industries will be instrumental to Zynga," Frank Gibeau, Zynga CEO, said in a statement. "His disciplined financial leadership and approach of working closely with teams to deliver high margin digital revenue, coupled with his ability to navigate business turnarounds, will help put us in a stronger position to achieve long-term growth."
Griffin takes the top financial slot after Zynga's former CFO David Lee abruptly resigned in November, leaving the position vacant with no permanent replacement during this time. Lee quit after having served at the company for 19 months.
Zynga rose 3.6% to finish the day at $2.91.
This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.