Money Matters - Simplified

Quantum Shares Popped: What You Need to Know

 Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.


 What: Shares of large-scale storage specialist Quantum(NYSE: QTM) are on a roller-coaster ride today, moving up as much as 11% in intraday trading.

So what: Last night's second-quarter report first inspired an after-hours sell-off in low volume, but the stock worked its way up rapidly after the opening bell to strong gains on much heavier volume as one analyst upped his target price on the stock. That's the fourth 10% upward single-day move for Quantum in the last month, and the second this week alone.

Now what: The storage market is in flux, clearly unsettling investors in many of the smaller players. Big boys EMC (NYSE: EMC) and Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ) are buying their way to new storage technologies, and lesser lights like Quantum can only hope to catch the eye of a hungry buyer before the buyout boom ends. Quantum's stock is now up 74.5% in the last month and has more than tripled from 52-week lows, reflecting the overheated storage speculation to a T.

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