November was an amazing month for the stock market, but investors tried to start December with the same kind of upward momentum. Market participants often look for bullish moves to finish a year, especially when the overall stock market has been on a solid upswing. That’s definitely been the case in 2020, as stocks recovered sharply from the coronavirus-inspired bear market in March and have gained ground with only mild corrections ever since.
Major market benchmarks looked poised to challenge their recent records. As of 11 a.m. EST, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES:^DJI) was up 375 points to 30,013. The S&P 500 (SNPINDEX:^GSPC) gained 48 points to 3,670, and the Nasdaq Composite (NASDAQINDEX:^IXIC) perked up by 126 points to 12,325.
Many investors came into the week figuring that one of the red-hot new tech upstarts of the past several years would be able to lead the overall market higher. Yet as it turns out, a couple of well-known names that’ve been around for a long time — BlackBerry (NYSE:BB) and Kohl’s (NYSE:KSS) — were among the biggest winners Tuesday morning.
Shares of BlackBerry soared 57% on Tuesday morning. The maker of what was once the most popular handheld mobile device has seen a major shift in its business model in recent years, but a new deal could make the company relevant again in a fast-growing field.
BlackBerry is set to work in partnership with Amazon.com‘s (NASDAQ:AMZN) Amazon Web Services division to promote BlackBerry’s Intelligent Vehicle Data Platform. The cloud-connected software platform is intended to give automakers the vehicle-sensor data they need in order to tailor in-vehicle services to the particular needs of drivers. BlackBerry hopes to unify the vast array of parts and component suppliers in a way that takes the task of data integration off automakers’ plates, letting them focus on what they do best.
The potential uses for BlackBerry’s platform are almost limitless. Adverse driving conditions, like traffic or bad weather, could prompt BlackBerry-enabled vehicles to enable safety features, while monitors could check on young drivers for safety considerations or provide alerts when child-safety locks aren’t properly engaged.
This isn’t the first time that BlackBerry has worked with Amazon. But with all the attention on vehicle innovation, BlackBerry is making the right move at the right time. Investors are acknowledging that today, and that’s brought the BlackBerry name back into the spotlight.
Kohl’s looks a lot prettier
Elsewhere, Kohl’s saw its stock jump 15%. The retailer has had a tough year, but a new strategic move could have things looking a lot better for 2021 and beyond.
Kohl’s entered into a strategic partnership with Sephora to open “Sephora at Kohl’s” in-store shops. The arrangement will involve 200 stores by the end of 2021, with the goal of expanding to 850 by 2023. Sephora will also appear on the Kohls.com website as part of what it calls “its unique immersive prestige beauty experience.”
The move looks like a strong answer to Target‘s (NYSE:TGT) recent decision to open in-store Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ:ULTA) shops at hundreds of locations in the next couple of years. It’s also consistent with Kohl’s longer-term strategy to focus on the active and casual lifestyle, with a beauty segment that stands up to shopper scrutiny. Retail stocks have had a hard time, but Kohl’s is looking up.
It’s good to see a day on which recent IPOs take a backseat to well-established companies. Moreover, it signals a broadening of the bull market, which, in turn, could help investors get even more gains in the future.