After two days of selling, stocks steadied Wednesday and were modestly higher by midday.
But there was nothing modest about the hefty gains a number of penny stocks scored in today's trading session.
Following are five of Wednesday's penny stocks on the move.
Today's Hot Penny Stocks
Acasti Pharma Inc. (Nasdaq: ACST) shares jumped 16% intraday to $1.22. Volume during the first half hour of trading was five times the stock's average daily volume. A Canadian-based emerging biopharmaceutical company, ACST is focused on the research, development, and commercialization of new krill oil-based forms of omega-3 phospholipid therapies for the treatment of cardio-metabolic disorders. ACST announced Wednesday the completion of two key trials.
"The conclusion of the clinical studies is a key milestone in our drug development program and we look forward to obtaining results for the two trials," said Andre Godin, Interim president and chief executive officer (CEO) of Acasti. The results of the phase 2 and pharmacokinetic trials are an important part of Acasti's ongoing discussions with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to obtain approval to conduct a phase 3 trial in the United States. ACST has a market cap of $78.28 million. Shares have traded as low as $0.80 and as high as $4.20 over the last 52 weeks on average daily volume of 227,569 shares.
China BAK Battery Inc. (Nasdaq: CBAK) shares climbed nearly 20% to $3.71 after entering into a strategic arrangement to repay overdue loans. Shares of the Shenzhen, China-based company, which manufactures lithium-based battery cells, surged to a 52-week high of $5 last week. Sending CBAK soaring was a report in The Wall Street Journal that South Korea's LG Chem said it will invest hundreds of millions of dollars by 2020 to build an electric car factory in China. The plant, to be built by the end of 2015, is expected to have a yearly production capacity of batteries for more than 100,000 electric vehicles, according to LG Chem's statement. CBAK stands to benefit from LG Chem's plan to revitalize the worldwide growth of zero-emission vehicles by starting in the world's largest car market.
Golden Mineral Co. (NYSE: AUMN) shares surged 19% to $1.25. Shares of the Golden, Colo.-based mining and minerals exploration company have been on a tear since late June when it announced plans for a July 2014 restart of mining at its Velardena Properties in Durango State, Mexico. Once mining and processing are ramped up to approximately 285 tons of sulfide ore in mid-2015, AUMN expects output of approximately 1 million to 1.2 million silver equivalent ounces annually (including silver and gold but excluding lead and zinc), with cash costs between $12 and $15 per silver ounce net of byproduct credits. AUMN shares are up some 117% over the last month.
Pingtan Marine Enterprise Ltd. (Nasdaq: PME) shares popped nearly 15% to $2.92 in morning trading. The global fishing company based in China announced today it finalized a joint venture agreement with China Co-op (Hainan) Industry Development Co. Ltd. The joint venture, known as Global Deep Ocean Fishing Industrial Ltd. Co., will process, cold store, and transport deep-ocean fishing products. Under the joint venture, the companies will also construct a fish processing plant in Pingtan County as soon as all permits are obtained. Additionally, the two will establish selling branches to distribute its fishing products to end markets directly across China. Mr. Xinrong Zhuo, Pingtan's chairman and CEO, stated, "It is important that we continue to expand our presence in mainland China as the demand for deep ocean seafood domestically continues to grow. This joint venture with China Co-op (Hainan) is a great leap forward to reaching our goal of capturing more sales directly to end-customers and to raise awareness of Pingtan's brand. We are excited about this joint venture, and believe it is truly a win-win opportunity for both companies." PME has a market cap of $213.45 million. Its 52-week low is $1.31, while its high is $4.59. Average daily volume is a light 93,594 shares.
Prana Biotechnology Ltd. (Nasdaq ADR: PRAN) shares rose 15% to $2.75 absent any news. By midday, 3.44 million shares had changed hands compared to the stock's average daily volume of 1.51 million shares. The Australian biotech company, which researches and develops therapeutic drugs for the treatment of neurological disorders, saw its shares plunge 76% to $2.51 this spring. Sending shares tumbling in April were disappointing results from its Alzheimer's disease trial and a bleak outlook. The stock has traded as low as $1.47 and as high as $13.30 over the last 52 weeks. PRAN has been recently touted as the next low-priced stock to soar - but investors should be cautious about buying in now, as PRAN may be moving too high, too fast on hype.
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