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Trending tickers: Nvidia, Standard Chartered, Moderna and Walmart

The latest investor updates on stocks that are trending on Friday

FILE PHOTO: NVIDIA logo is seen near computer motherboard in this illustration taken January 8, 2024. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo
Nvidia shares pop 16% after AI-fuelled bumper earnings (REUTERS / Reuters)

Nvidia (NVDA)

Wall Street analysts have cheered Nvidia’s blowout earnings report with the median price target for the stock rising 19%.

The AI darling reported adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of $5.16 on revenue of $22.1bn (£17.4bn) for the quarter. The company also guided higher than analysts' expectations for the first quarter, saying it anticipates revenue of $24bn.

“The equity rally continued around the globe as Nvidia earnings sparked a wave of record highs. NVIDIA added $277bn in value, the most in market history, and brought its gains for the year to date to $740bn, taking its market capitalization to $1.94tn,” Jeremy Naylor, analyst at IG, said.

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Read more: FTSE 100 live: Stocks continue to rally as Standard Chartered announces $1bn buyback

Those shorting Nvidia stock were left nursing more than $2.9bn of paper losses, per data from Ihor Dusaniwsky, managing director of predictive analytics at S3 Partners, Reuters reported.

Standard Chartered (STAN.L)

Standard Chartered has laid out plans to hand cash back to shareholders as it became the latest lender to reveal higher profits.

The Asia-focused bank launched a $1bn (£800m) share buyback and plans to return around $5bn (£4bn) to shareholders over the next three years.

It came as the company reported a pre-tax profit of $5.7bn (£4.5bn) for 2023, up 22% against the previous year.

The profit surge pushed the chief executive Bill Winters’ pay up 22% to £7.8m – from £6.4m in 2022. It is his largest pay package in nearly a decade.

Moderna (MRNA)

Shares of Moderna closed 13% higher Thursday after the company posted a surprise quarterly profit, boosted by deferred revenue and cost cuts.

The US biotech said revenues in the three months to December-end were $2.8bn, down on the $5.1bn recorded a year earlier but ahead of forecasts for $2.5bn.

Net income slipped to $217m from $1.5bn, while diluted earnings per share came in at $0.55.

Waning demand for COVID vaccines and anticipation of a loss for 2023 led to a steep decline in Moderna's shares last year.

Chief executive Stephane Bancel said: "2023 was a year of transition for Moderna as we adapted to the endemic market.

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“At the same time, our development team made significant pipeline advancements across infectious diseases, oncology and rare diseases, while our commercial team increased our COVID-19 market share in the US.”

Walmart (WMT)

Walmart investors are gearing up for a stock split at the end of this week.

The company’s 3-for-1 split means investors will receive an additional two shares for each one they already own. The move will increase the firm’s outstanding shares from 2.7 billion to about 8.1 billion.

Shares issued in the stock split will be payable after market close on Friday, 23 February, for investors who own shares of the retailer "at the close of business" on Thursday, 22 February. On Monday, 26 February, at market open, Walmart will begin trading on a post-split basis.

“Sam Walton believed it was important to keep our share price in a range where purchasing whole shares, rather than fractions, was accessible to all of our associates,” said Doug McMillon, president and CEO of Walmart.

“Given our growth and our plans for the future, we felt it was a good time to split the stock and encourage our associates to participate in the years to come. As Sam said, ‘We’re all in this together. That’s the secret."

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