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Stocks Making the Biggest Moves Midday: Virgin Galactic, Gap, Nikola and More

JOHANNES EISELE | AFP | Getty Images

Check out the companies making headlines in midday trading.

Virgin Galactic – The space company's shares dropped 14% after a filing showed chairman Chamath Palihapitya sold his personal holdings of 6.2 million shares for about $213 million. He still owns 15.8 million shares with investment partner Ian Osborne. Palihapitiya, in a statement to CNBC, said that he plans to redirect the sale "into a large investment I am making towards fighting climate change."

Ark Innovation — Shares of Cathie Wood's flagship ETF dipped more than 6% as rising interest rates pressured innovation stocks. The funds top holdings were all in the red. Shares of Tesla dropped 7%, Square and Roku both lost 6% and Baidu fell 8%. CRISPR Therapeutics fell nearly 10% and Shopify retreated 7.5%.

Big Lots — The retail stock slid more than 3% after its comparable store sales results for the fourth quarter mixed expectations. The company reported comparable sales growth of 7.9%, before the 8.4% projected by analysts, according to FactSet. The company did not provide full-year guidance, citing uncertainty around the pandemic and government stimulus. Earnings per share did beat expectations, based on estimates compiled by Refinitiv.

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings — Shares of Norwegian dropped 14%, underperforming other struggling cruise names, after the company announced another share offering. The company is selling about 47.6 million shares for $30 per share. Norwegian said it plans to use the funds to repurchase debt.

Cisco Systems — Shares of Cisco Systems rose more than 3% after JPMorgan upgraded the stocks to overweight from neutral. "We are upgrading CSCO shares to Overweight on a combination of Enterprise IT spending recovery tracking ahead of expectation, on-track transformation to subscriptions, as well as still inexpensive valuation following underperformance to peers," the firm said.

Nikola — Shares of the electric truck maker dropped more than 7% after JPMorgan downgraded the stock to neutral from overweight. The Wall Street firm said the "good news" is already prices into Nikola's stock.

Gap — Shares of the apparel retailer jumped more than 6% after the company said it's predicting a bounce back to sales growth in 2021 as more consumers return to stores. Gap reported fourth-quarter sales that came below estimates amid the pandemic, but it swung to a profit, thanks to its efforts to sell more merchandise at full price and progress it made shuttering underperforming stores.

Oracle — The tech stock jumped 7% after Barclays upgraded the company to overweight from equal weight, saying it sees "accelerating growth" that will drive "multiple expansion." Barclays cited "an improving cloud mix and a better IT spend environment" as factors to drive Oracle shares higher.

Hibbett Sports — The sports retailer's stock fell more than 5% on the back of mixed fourth-quarter results. The company logged earnings per share of $1.40 on revenue of $367.8 million. Analysts surveyed by FactSet expected earnings per share of $1.37 on revenue of $380.9 million. For 2020, however, Hibbett touted a record year thanks in part to a surge in online sales.

IMAX Corp. —  Imax shares jumped 11% after the company said it expects better results this year with consumers returning to theatres. The jump comes despite the theatre operator reporting mixed fourth-quarter results, with the company's losses per share topping a Refinitiv estimate. However, Imax also logged a better-than-expected revenue for the quarter.

— with reporting from CNBC's Yun Li, Jesse Pound and Rich Mendez.

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