Eagle & Beagle
Wall Street decided to join in the holiday shopping festivities, as buyers flooded the market on Black Friday (a term that is not nearly as beloved among stock traders as it is among consumers).
The holiday-shortened trading week was the best for stocks since early summer. The Dow added 3.3 percent to top 13,000, and closed Friday with all of the 30 stocks in the index showing gains.
Among Oklahoma stocks, the strongest performer was Chesapeake Energy Corp. CHK shares gained 7.3 percent to close Friday at $17.83. It was a welcome week for long-term holders, as it broke a string of four straight weeks of losses.
Much of the boost came after major shareholder Carl Icahn increased his stake in the Oklahoma City energy company. Icahn owns almost 9 percent of the outstanding shares of Chesapeake.
While few have the resources of Icahn, many follow his lead.
The Thanksgiving week buying spree meant there were precious few beagle candidates among Oklahoma stocks.
LSB Industries, with just a 1.7 percent decline, was among the very few state stocks that failed to record a gain. That's actually a pretty good representation of the strength of LSB among traders, as the small loss came on some bad news.
LSB reported it would lose $2 million a week for the six to eight weeks its Pryor ammonia plant will be shut down to handle unexpected maintenance work.
Combined with other plant problems, the Oklahoma City chemical and climate control company isn't making much ammonia.
The unexpected news prompted a halt in trading and a one-day 6-percent loss in LXU shares, yet the stock rebounded nicely at week's end.
Eagle & Beagle is a weekly look at the state's high-performing (eagle) and low-performing (beagle) stocks by Business Writer Don Mecoy.