Put down the 10-K filings and the stock screeners. It's time to take a break from the traditional methods of generating investment ideas. Instead, let the crowd do it for you.
From hedge funds to individual investors, scores of market participants are turning to social media and market data to figure out which stocks are worth watching. It's a concept that's known as "crowdsourcing," and it uses the masses to identify emerging trends in the market.
Crowdsourcing has long been a popular tool for the advertising industry, but it also makes a lot of sense as an investment tool. After all, the market is completely driven by the supply and demand, so it can be valuable to see what names are trending among the crowd.
While some fund managers are already trying to leverage social media resources like Twitter to find algorithmic trading opportunities, for most investors, crowdsourcing works best as a starting point for investors who want a place to begin their analysis.
So, today, we'll leverage the power of the crowd to take a look at some of the most active stocks on the market.
Fortress Investment Group
- Nearest Resistance: $8.08
- Nearest Support: $7.95
- Catalyst: Acquisition
First on our list of the market's most active trades today is private equity firm Fortress Investment Group (FIG) . Fortress is up more than 28% this afternoon, rallying on news that it's being acquired by Softbank Group in a $3.1 billion deal that will pay Fortress shareholders $8.08 in cash. That big up-move puts Fortress within about 1% of its purchase price, implying that Wall Street is pricing in a 96% likelihood that the deal gets done. That means, at this point, the money has already been made on the Fortress trade. Investors should look elsewhere for upside opportunities.
- Nearest Resistance: $5.80
- Nearest Support: $4.15
- Catalyst: Q4 Earnings
Another big gainer this afternoon is $2.8 billion daily deals site Groupon (GRPN) . Groupon is up more than 20% this afternoon, rallying hard on the heels of fourth quarter earnings that beat expectations. Groupon earned 7 cents per share in the fourth quarter, coming in far ahead of the 3-cent profit that Wall Street analysts were expecting, on average. Combined with solid earnings estimates for the full year, investors are feeling excited about Groupon again.
Technically speaking, Groupon is in breakout mode. Shares broke through prior resistance at $4.15 at the open today, clearing a path towards prior highs up at the $5.80 level. If you decide to be a buyer here, consider parking a protective stop on the other side of $3.75.
- Nearest Resistance: $3.10
- Nearest Support: $2.50
- Catalyst: Technical Setup
Social game developer Zynga (ZNGA) is seeing a big-volume day for technical reasons mid-week, as shares touch the bottom of their uptrend for the fourth time since last April. Zynga's uptrend is shallow, but it's pretty clear-cut, with shares testing trendline support last week. Today's 2.6% dip is a correction following that up-move, but the technical trajectory remains up and to the right. Longer-term, look for a re-test of trendline resistance up around $3.10.
Procter & Gamble
- Nearest Resistance: N/A
- Nearest Support: $89
- Catalyst: Activist Stake
Shares of blue-chip giant Procter & Gamble (PG) are breaking out this afternoon, up 3.3% following news that activist investor Trian Partners had purchased a 6.42 million-share stake in the company. Investors are speculating that Trian's involvement in P&G could mean a breakup to wring more value out of shares. Meanwhile, P&G started the week on our Rocket Stocks list. From a technical standpoint, today's breakout through $89 resistance is offering investors a new buy signal in shares of Procter & Gamble. If you decide to jump into this blue chip today, it makes sense to park a protective stop on the other side of shares' prior swing lows at $86.
American International Group
- Nearest Resistance: $64
- Nearest Support: $58
- Catalyst: Q4 Earnings
Insurance giant American International Group (AIG) is selling off on big volume this afternoon, down more than 9% following the firm's fourth quarter earnings call. On an adjusted basis, AIG lost $2.72 per share during the quarter, widely missing the 42-cent consensus profit that investors were expecting. That claims-fueled earnings miss is AIG's fourth loss in six quarters.
Technically speaking, though, this one is the loss that matters. That's because shares violated the uptrend that's been propelling AIG higher since the end of June, signaling a trend reversal that opens up considerable downside risk from here. If you've owned AIG during its run-up, now looks like a good time to take some profits off the table.
- Nearest Resistance: $25
- Nearest Support: N/A
- Catalyst: Q4 Earnings
Fashion accessory stock Fossil Group (FOSL) is another stock that's plunging on big-volume following earnings. Fossil actually beat expectations, generating $1.32 in profits per share for the quarter, materially ahead of the $1.17 consensus on Wall Street. That said, however, the firm's forecast was bad with a surprise first-quarter loss expected and a weak outlook for the full 2017 year. Shares are down more than 17.7% this afternoon.
Fossil's big gap lower has a lot to do with the last two weeks' price action. Shares violated support at $25 at the start of February, opening up considerable downside risk that has a lot to do with the scope of today's big gap lower. Today's plunge to new 52-week lows doesn't mean that the selling is over, though. This is a stock to avoid until shares can start establishing some higher lows again.
VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF
- Nearest Resistance: $28
- Nearest Support: $24.50
- Catalyst: Spot Gold
Last up, the VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) is seeing a slight correction on high volume this afternoon, following spot gold prices down 0.88% today. While today's price action is corrective, the longer-term looks a lot more bullish as GDX pulls off a trend reversal. Shares have been in an uptrend since December, bouncing their way higher on every test of the bottom of that newfound trend, mirroring what we saw at the start of last year. Buy the dips in GDX.