Check out the companies making headlines in midday trading.
Shake Shack — The fast food chain’s stock jumped more than 6% after the Wall Street Journal reported that activist investor Engaged Capital is planning a proxy fight for three board seats at the company. Engaged Capital bought a 6.6% stake in Shake Shack, including swaps. The stock has rebounded more than 60% this year.
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Western Digital — Western Digital advanced 8% in midday trading. A Reuters report, citing two sources familiar with the matter, said the firm is ramping up merger talks with Kioxia Holdings, Japan’s computer memory maker.
H&R Block, Intuit — Shares of the tax preparers dropped 3% and 2%, respectively, following reports of the potential creation of a government-run online tax filing program. The IRS is due to release the report this week, the Wall Street Journal reported. The agency has been looking into it as part of the Inflation Reduction Act.
Newmont — Shares of the gold miner added about 1% after it announced it would acquire Australian miner Newcrest. It is the third largest global deal so far this year, worth about $17.8 billion, according to Reuters.
Charles Schwab — The brokerage firm saw its shares climb more than 3% midday after Raymond James upgraded the stock and said it can rally almost 30%, as concerns about stability in U.S. banks have not affected Schwab’s ability to attract new accounts and assets.
Microsoft, Activision Blizzard — The European Union on Monday approved Microsoft’s proposed plan to buy gaming company Activision Blizzard for $69 billion. Activision shares added 1%, while Microsoft was little changed.
SoFi Technologies — The firm lost nearly 9% in midday trading. Wedbush downgraded the stock earlier on Monday, over concerns SoFi may be nearing a ceiling with fee growth, which will push SoFi to raise capital to grow further.
Albemarle — Shares of the lithium company rose 4.2% following an upgrade from Baird. The firm said that Albemarle is “a leader in catalyst products” and has potential for greater market share. To be sure, it noted that lithium prices have declined more than 40% year to date.
Dupont de Nemours — The chemicals maker gained 2.4% after Deutsche Bank upgraded shares to a buy rating. The Wall Street firm said shares trade at a significant discount to peers.
AerCap — The aviation leasing company added 2.6% on the back of an upgrade from Citi, which said demand should remain strong.
Lam Research — Lam added 2.6% after Citi added a positive catalyst watch on the stock. The bank said the semiconductor company has a “self-help” story amid an expansion in Asia.
Crocs — The shoe maker advanced 3.9% after Baird called the stock a fresh pick. Baird said it believes the company can meet or exceed guidance for 2023.
Tapestry — Shares rose 4.6% following an upgrade to outperform from market perform by Bernstein. The Coach and Kate Spade parent has a strong valuation and long-term investment case, the Wall Street firm said.
— CNBC’s Samantha Subin, Hakyung Kim, Michelle Fox, Yun LI, Brian Evans, Tanaya Macheel and Sarah Min contributed reporting