Do you like volatility? If so, you can just stick with Amazon (AMZN) - Get Report , as the stock is has moved exactly zero percent from Wednesday's close -- despite Friday's post-earnings drop of 8.5%.
After closing near $583 on Wednesday, shares gapped higher Thursday and climbed all the way up to around $635. But currently, it's trading back at $583, after investors gave the company's earnings results a thumbs down, despite posting it's biggest quarterly profit in history.
It seems like investors hopes got too high for the e-commerce giant as they watched traditional retailers struggling to compete with online sellers (more on that in a minute). That was evident by analysts' consensus expectation for earnings of $1.56 per share. Actual results -- which set a record -- came in at just $1 per share.
ITG analysts Joshua Mohany pointed out that Amazon experienced significant currency headwinds, although to be fair, most global U.S. companies are experiencing the same thing.
Other than that, revenues soared more than 20%, Prime memberships grew handily for the year, up 51%, and guidance for the first quarter of 2016 was pretty strong.
Long-term investors probably aren't too concerned by these stock moves, at least if they've owned Amazon for a while. Shares are up 88% since the start of 2015, despite Friday's big drop.
A post-earnings selloff certainly isn't going to stop Jeff Bezos & Company from attempting to take over the world -- at least, not in the view of Jim Cramer, TheStreet's co-manager of the Action Alerts PLUS portfolio.
Now, let's circle back to that point about the struggles of traditional retailers. Macy's (M) - Get Report is enjoying Friday's stock market rally, despite the company's announcement that it's cutting forward guidance.
No, you're not experiencing déjà vu. It's the second time Macy's has cut guidance this month. In early January, the company reduced its full-year EPS guidance to the range of $3.85 to $3.90, from $4.20 to $4.30.
Now, the company expects earnings to come in around $3.54 to $3.59 per share. The fact that shares are up 2% shows that investors had either already factored in those poor, poor results for the company, or they just don't care anymore.
The stock, previously outlined as a top pick at the Delivery Alpha conference, is down a whopping 38% over the past year and 44% from mid-July when the conference was held.
Hopefully, Macy's partnership with Etsy will be able to help lift the company out of the doldrums -- although its low valuation and 3.5% dividend yield won't hurt.
Is Office Depot the next RadioShack? That would be highly unfortunate, but with hurdle after hurdle presenting itself in the planned merger with Staples (SPLS) , there are serious concerns among investors. And its troubles are nothing new: Kids born in 1992 have never seen a day when that stock made a new all-time high -- it topped out a touch over $50 a share 24 years ago.
Office Depot (ODP) - Get Report and Staples are attempting to gain FTC approval to merge, in hopes that the combined entity would better be able to fend off the onslaught being levied against them by online retailers -- the biggest of which is, of course, Amazon -- and other bricks-and-mortar retailers that, due to larger scale and bigger footprints, have been able to undercut the office supply companies on price.
There are two ways to compete. The first is to cut prices in hopes of keeping customers from heading to Walmart (WMT) - Get Report , Target (TGT) - Get Report or Amazon. The second would be to do nothing, maintain somewhat overpriced merchandise (which would give them better margins), and hope that a significant percentage of Americans don't ever realize they can get better deals by shopping online or at the places where they already purchase other items, like groceries.
Just last week, Staples and Office Depot agreed to move their termination date for the merger out to May, giving them more time to work out a deal with the FTC.
On the one hand, allowing the companies to merge would create something of a monopoly on the office supply store front. On the other hand, it's quite likely both companies may go the way of RadioShack otherwise.
Shares of Office Depot and Staples are down 88% and 63%, respectively, since June 2006.
This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.