The stock market gave up modest amounts of ground on Wednesday, as investors reacted negatively to bad news on the earnings front in some key areas of the market. Losses were generally limited, though, with major indexes falling between 0.1% and 0.4%. Nevertheless, some high-profile stocks suffered more dramatic declines. Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA), Aphria (NYSE:APHA), and Anadarko Petroleum (NYSE:APC) were among the worst performers. Here’s why they did so poorly.
EA drops out of the game
Shares of Electronic Arts dropped 13% after the video game manufacturer reported lackluster results for its fiscal third quarter. EA said that net revenue rose just 11% during the period, and although the company posted a profit to reverse a year-earlier loss, operational mistakes weighed on performance. In particular, the video game maker said that a late release for Battlefield V put the new installment at a competitive disadvantage, and poor performance in the Asian market also hurt results. CEO Andrew Wilson is hopeful that EA can bounce back from the difficult quarter, but a poor outlook sapped confidence, and big declines in other video game stocks point to a lack of strong sentiment across the industry.
Aphria rejects a buyout bid
Aphria saw its stock drop more than 9% on a poor day for cannabis-related stocks generally. Aphria in particular suffered when it formally rejected a hostile takeover bid from fellow marijuana industry player Green Growth, which had offered an all-stock deal involving 1.5714 shares of Green Growth for every Aphria share. Aphria’s board of directors argued that the deal “significantly undervalues Aphria relative to its current and future worth,” pointing to recent share prices that reflect that the bid is actually a discount to where Aphria stock has traded recently. The bid never made much sense from Aphria’s perspective, and today’s drop seems to reflect a more general concern that cannabis stocks have risen too, far too quickly in 2019.
Anadarko deals with slumping energy prices
Finally, shares of Anadarko Petroleum finished lower by 7%. The energy company reported fourth-quarter results that included adjusted earnings figures that more than doubled from year-earlier levels on average daily production of just over 700,000 barrels of oil equivalent. Yet a big drop in oil prices resulted in far lower bottom-line figures than investors had wanted to see, and investors seem nervous about the size of Anadarko’s commitment to capital investment in 2019. Shareholders would prefer to see a sustained rise in oil prices to support Anadarko’s strategic moves and ensure stronger profit growth this year, but it’s uncertain whether they’ll actually get it.