Why Blackberry, Ciena, and Fitbit Jumped Today

By Dan Caplinger Markets Fool.com

The stock market performed quite well on Thursday, sending the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq Composite to new record closings. Investors reacted favorably to the latest report on the U.S. private employment picture from payroll and benefits specialist ADP, which indicated 253,000 new jobs were created in May and suggested a better-than-expected result is likely Friday when the Labor Department issues its official May employment report. In addition, bullish sentiments broadly lifted the major market benchmarks, and good news from some select companies led them to even greater gains. BlackBerry (NASDAQ: BBRY), Ciena (NYSE: CIEN), and Fitbit (NYSE: FIT) were among the best performers on the day. Below, we'll look more closely at these stocks to tell you why they did so well.

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BlackBerry gets a rare positive review

BlackBerry shares jumped 8% after the company received an unusual positive review from an analyst renowned for his negative calls on companies. Andrew Left of Citron Research called out the mobile device pioneer as having the potential to see its stock double within the next two years, citing technology that BlackBerry has developed as having applications in both autonomous vehicles and the Internet of Things. Also, BlackBerry's relatively low market capitalization of less than $6 billion could easily make it a takeover target for the much larger players in the technology industry. Given how rare it is for Citron to issue bullish outlooks on the stock, BlackBerry is getting a lot more attention than it ordinarily would from a positive analyst review.

Image source: BlackBerry.

Ciena posts strong results

Ciena shares climbed 16% after the company reported its fiscal second-quarter results. The computer networking specialist said that adjusted net income climbed by more than a third from year-ago levels on a more than 10% jump in sales. CEO Gary Smith pointed to "positive market dynamics and a growing competitive advantage" for the quarter's strong results, stating that Ciena will "continue to win as an innovation powerhouse with global scale and deep customer relationships across a broad set of applications and market segments."

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Growth in the Asia-Pacific region was especially important for the company, and its networking platform business provided the bulk of the revenue gains. Looking ahead, Ciena is poised to capitalize on continued interest in networking upgrades in the enterprise sector well into the future.

Fitbit looks a little more fit

Finally, Fitbit stock gained 7% on the day. The maker of personal fitness tracking wearables revealed Wednesday that its more recent devices, which track both heart rate and movement, can successfully determine when its users are in various stages of their sleep cycle. In particular, Fitbit said that its Alta HR, Blaze, and Charge 2 devices can accurately tell whether you're in light sleep, deep sleep, or REM sleep, and then report on those sleep stages in its tracking analytics. As more health experts focus on the importance of sleep, Fitbit can cater to those seeking more information on their sleep habits. However, regarding today's share price gains, some investors pointed instead simply to the fact that the company's stock has fallen so far that it was due for a move higher. Even with today's gains, Fitbit shares are down by almost 30% so far in 2017.

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Dan Caplinger has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Fitbit. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.