The stock market continued to make strong advances on Thursday, with the Dow Jones Industrials closing above the 25,000 mark for the first time. Broader major benchmarks posted slightly more modest gains of half a percent or less, but the mood on Wall Street remained generally upbeat in light of optimistic expectations for the coming earnings season. In addition, some good news from well-known individual companies helped to sustain momentum. Zumiez (NASDAQ: ZUMZ), OneMain Holdings (NYSE: OMF), and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (NYSE: FCAU) 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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Surf's up for Zumiez
Shares of Zumiez climbed 12% after the surf and board retailer reported favorable sales news and boosted its guidance for the fiscal fourth quarter. The company said that sales for the five-week period ending Dec. 30 were higher by 11% compared to year-earlier figures, coming in at $160 million. Comparable sales were up 7.9% for the period, which was double the pace of growth during the 2016 holiday season. Zumiez also said that it believed comps would rise by 7% for the full quarter, with earnings of $0.88 to $0.90 per share representing a $0.06 to $0.10 jump from its previous expectations. Given the challenges that retailers across the industry have had, Zumiez's performance was particularly noteworthy.
OneMain has new partners
OneMain Holdings stock soared 29% in the wake of interest from private equity investors. Affiliates of Apollo Global and Varde Partners agreed to acquire an additional stake in OneMain from Fortress Investment Group for $26 per share. After the deal, Apollo and Varde will jointly own more than 40% of the consumer finance company, and some have speculated that the private equity companies might choose to bring OneMain private by making an offer for the remaining 60% of the company. The move shows how far subprime lending has recovered in the past decade, and many have high hopes for OneMain in the future.
Fiat Chrysler deals with a dip
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Finally, shares of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles gained nearly 8%. The automaker reported yesterday that sales figures for December 2017 were weaker than they were 12 months earlier, with an 11% drop to just under 172,000 units. Sales of Chrysler Pacifica minivans were the best ever for the last month of the year, but fleet sales were down by more than 40%. Nevertheless, investors seemed satisfied with Fiat's explanation that declines were intended to limit sales for rental purposes, and an 18% rise for the Jeep Cherokee was also fairly strong. With good performance in key segments, Fiat Chrysler is holding up well and seems to be on track with its longer-term strategic vision.
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