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Ontario reports more than 4300 new cases of COVID-19 over last two days – CTV Toronto

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TORONTO —
Ontario is reporting more than 4,300 new cases of COVID-19 over the past two days.

The 4,301 new infections bring Ontario’s COVID-19 case total to 169,411, including deaths and recoveries. 

The province says that of the new cases logged 2,159 were recorded on Friday and 2,142 were recorded Saturday.

Health officials say 81 deaths related to the disease occurred in the last 48-hour period, pushing the province’s death toll to 4,359. At least 39 of those who died were residents of a long-term care facility. 

As well, 4,150 more cases are now considered to be resolved by the Ministry of Health. Since the beginning of the pandemic, 145,173 people have fully recovered after contracting COVID-19. 

Ontario logged a record 2,447 cases on Thursday and 2,408 on Wednesday.

The number of tests completed over the last two days was not made available by the province.

Saturday’s report comes as Ontario enters a province-wide lockdown to curb the spread of COVID-19 and reduce the strain on hospitals. The lockdown forces the closure of most indoor businesses, with the exception of grocery stores and pharmacies.

READ MORE: Ontario-wide lockdown for COVID-19 now in effect

There are currently 755 patients in hospital with COVID-19, though the province says that at least 10 per cent of hospitals did not report patient data. Of those patients, 286 are currently being treated in intensive care and 187 are breathing with the assistance of a ventilator. 

COVID-19 modelling released by the province on Monday showed that Ontario is expected to surpass 300 patients in intensive care by the end of December.

The government has previously said that when there are more than 300 COVID-19 patients in the ICU, medical care not related to the disease becomes nearly impossible to handle.

Of the new cases recorded on Friday and Saturday, 1,157 are in Toronto, 729 are in Peel Region, 475 are in York Region, 266 are in Windsor-Essex County, and 213 are in Hamilton.

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GameStop shares almost double again as retail investors poke Wall Street's bears – CBC.ca

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Individual investors again piled into several niche stock market plays on Tuesday, prompting hedge fund short sellers to scramble to cover losing bets and driving a rally in shares of companies including GameStop and Etsy.

The surge in recent days — GameStop has risen to about $150 from $19 since Jan. 12 while BlackBerry Ltd. has shot up 170 per cent this year — has spurred concerns over bubbles in stocks that hedge funds and other speculative players had bet would fall in value.

To some on Wall Street, the moves have also begun to look symbolic of a stock market that may be overvalued at the end of a year dominated by floods of fiscal and monetary stimulus to ease the coronavirus crisis.

“This is hardly an environment where informed investors are transacting to establish price discovery,” said Mike O’Rourke, chief market strategist at JonesTrading.

Chasing tips from Reddit

The benchmark S&P 500 has gained more than 70 per cent since March, with analysts putting moves in share prices of several loss-making firms down to herds of amateur investors chasing tips from Reddit discussion threads or the private Facebook group Robin Hood’s Stock Market Watchlist.

Venture capital investor Chamath Palihapitiya said in a tweet that he had bought $115 call options on GameStop, a gaming and electronics retailer, on Tuesday morning after an exchange with Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian. Those give him the right to buy the shares at $115, should he choose to. 

GameStop closed at $147.98, up about 92 per cent on the day and extending its winning streak to a fourth straight session.

In after hours trading in New York on Tuesday evening, the shares were changing hands at more than $200 a share.

Much of the action has centred around shares that have been heavily “shorted” by other market players — traditionally an area dominated by hedge funds.

Shares in Evotec, a Germany-based drug company, rallied eight per cent on Tuesday with three traders reporting that hedge fund Melvin Capital Management was closing its short positions after suffering losses on some bets.

Melvin previously held a 6.2 per cent short bet against Evotec, according to filings with the German regulator. The fund did not respond to requests for comment.

WATCH | Here’s how short selling works:

An animated explanation of how people make money from stocks losing value 0:46

Short sellers typically bet against stocks of companies that they view as outdated in their business models or otherwise overvalued.

BlackBerry shares trade at a 12-month forward price to earnings ratio (P/E ratio) of 117.22, while online retailer Etsy has a multiple of 93.44. At that level, investors are paying $93 for every dollar of actual profit at the underlying company.

By contrast, Apple Inc., the world’s most valuable publicly listed firm, has a 12-month forward P/E ratio of just 34.46. Etsy jumped as much as nine per cent on Tuesday after Tesla Inc. CEO Elon Musk, also often a focal point for social media-savvy traders, endorsed the company in a tweet.

Investor Andrew Left is as convinced as ever that GameStop is a dying business and its stock price will fall sharply.

Will it end badly? Sure. We just don’t know when– Thomas Hayes, Great Hill Capital

Left shorted the company’s stock when it traded around $40 a share and forecast publicly that it would tumble to $20 a share. He said on Tuesday that he was still shorting the stock.

“Will it end badly? Sure. We just don’t know when,” said Thomas Hayes, managing member at Great Hill Capital in New York.

“The most optimistic estimate from the street [for GameStop] is $30 a share, which would be pricing in perfection on all of the most bullish initiatives of the company.”

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GameStop shares continue meteoric rise as retail investors poke Wall Street's bears – CBC.ca

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Individual investors again piled into several niche stock market plays on Tuesday, prompting hedge fund short sellers to scramble to cover losing bets and driving a rally in shares of companies including GameStop and Etsy.

The surge in recent days — GameStop has risen to about $90 from $19 since Jan. 12 while BlackBerry Ltd. has shot up 170 per cent this year — has spurred concerns over bubbles in stocks that hedge funds and other speculative players had bet will fall in value.

To some on Wall Street, the moves have also begun to look symbolic of a stock market that may be overvalued at the end of a year dominated by floods of fiscal and monetary stimulus to ease the coronavirus crisis.

“This is hardly an environment where informed investors are transacting to establish price discovery,” said Mike O’Rourke, chief market strategist at JonesTrading.

The benchmark S&P 500 has gained more than 70 per cent since March, with analysts putting moves in share prices of several loss-making firms down to herds of amateur investors chasing tips from Reddit discussion threads or the private Facebook group Robin Hood’s Stock Market Watchlist.

Venture capital investor Chamath Palihapitiya said in a tweet that he had bought $115 call options on GameStop, a gaming and electronics retailer, on Tuesday morning after an exchange with Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian. Those give him the right to buy the shares at $115, should he choose to. 

GameStop gained 22 per cent to $93.70 in morning trade, well below Monday’s intraday high of $159.18, but extending its winning streak to a fourth straight session. The broader U.S. stock market was about flat on the day.

Will it end badly? Sure. We just don’t know when.– Thomas Hayes, Great Hill Capital

Much of the action has centred around shares that have been heavily “shorted” by other market players — traditionally an area dominated by hedge funds. Shares in Evotec, a Germany-based drug company, rallied eight per cent on Tuesday with three traders reporting that hedge fund Melvin Capital Management was closing its short positions after suffering losses on some bets.

WATCH: Here’s how short selling works:

An animated explanation of how people make money from stocks losing value 0:46

Melvin previously held a 6.2 per cent short bet against Evotec, according to filings with the German regulator. The fund did not respond to requests for comment. Short sellers typically bet against stocks of companies that they view as outdated in their business models or otherwise overvalued. BlackBerry shares trade at a 12-month forward P/E ratio of 117.22, while online retailer Etsy has a multiple of 93.44. At that level, investors are paying $93 for every dollar of actual profit at the underlying company.

By contrast, Apple Inc., the world’s most valuable publicly listed firm, has a 12-month forward P/E ratio of just 34.46. Etsy jumped as much as nine per cent on Tuesday after Tesla Inc. CEO Elon Musk, also often a focal point for social media-savvy traders, endorsed the company in a tweet.

Investor Andrew Left is as convinced as ever that GameStop is a dying business and its stock price will fall sharply. Left shorted the company’s stock when it traded around $40 a share and forecast publicly that it would tumble to $20 a share. He said on Tuesday that he was still shorting the stock.

“Will it end badly? Sure. We just don’t know when,” said Thomas Hayes, managing member at Great Hill Capital in New York. “The most optimistic estimate from the street [for GameStop] is $30 a share, which would be pricing in perfection on all of the most bullish initiatives of the company.”

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Retail trading frenzy sparks jitters for noted GameStop short-seller – The Globe and Mail

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Short-seller Andrew Left does not usually smoke. But on Monday he had a cigarette to calm his nerves as shares of GameStop Corp, the stock he had shorted, continued to rocket higher.

Left, who has built a reputation by targeting companies he thinks are overvalued, is as convinced as ever that videogame retailer GameStop is a dying business whose stock price will fall sharply someday. He said on Tuesday he is still short the stock, which means he has bet that the price will fall, and more convinced than ever of his position.

“If I had never been involved in GameStop and came to this right now, would I still be short this stock? 100 percent,” Left, who runs Citron Research and a hedge fund, told Reuters on Tuesday. “This is an old school, failing mall-based video retailer and investors can’t change the perception of that.”

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GameStop did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Shares of GameStop jumped 22% on Tuesday after surging 144% a day earlier, as individual investors again piled into a number of niche stocks, prompting short sellers to scramble to cover losing bets.

Left shorted the company’s stock – selling borrowed shares in a bet that the price will fall and that the shares can be bought back at a lower level – when it traded around $40 a share and forecast publicly that it would tumble to $20 a share.

Since Left spoke out publicly about GameStop earlier this month, other investors have turned out en masse to take the other side of short-sellers’ bets, forcing the stock up some 308% this year to trade at $112.45, or up 47% on Tuesday.

Along the way, Left said he has been threatened – although he declined to specify how – and asked authorities to investigate.

“Everyone thinks this stock sucks and the only reason people are buying it and own it is that for them it is a game.”

He added, “I created this game, based on uncovering the truths … so I can’t get mad at people for taking the other side.”

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The market fury, however, is something that Left, who has been posting his research for two decades and has taken on prominent hedge fund managers like Bill Ackman at companies like Valeant, has not seen before.

Short selling is something every hedge fund is technically able to do but only a handful of firms – including Citron, Jim Chanos’ Kynikos Associates, Carson Block’s Muddy Waters Research, and Ben Axler’s Spruce Point Capital Management – specialize in.

Many hedge funds acknowledged over the last months that shorting had hurt their performance and Melvin Capital, a $13 billion hedge fund, on Monday received a financial lifeline from hedge funds Citadel and Point72 Asset Management after having been deeply hurt by short bets that went the other way.

The pain continues for short investors as some of the market’s most shorted stocks like retailers Bed Bath & Beyond and Dillard’s Inc have marched higher in the last days.

“I don’t smoke but yesterday I was outside smoking a cigarette,” Left acknowledged with a laugh, explaining his current stress. Last year his two-year-old fund returned 155%, after gaining 43% in 2019.

This year the Citron fund is off 2.5% since the beginning of January, Left said. “This kind of situation teaches you proper allocation,” he said.

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