What Are Meme Stocks? – NerdWallet

Meme inventory definition

A meme inventory is a share of an organization that shortly jumps in worth as a result of consideration of a devoted on-line following. Meme shares often achieve recognition by means of dialogue threads on neighborhood discussion board websites reminiscent of Reddit and social media platforms. The first profitable meme inventory was GameStop Corp (GME)


How meme shares work

Without their cult followings, meme shares aren’t essentially priceless property. These on-line communities, reminiscent of the favored Reddit thread WallStreetBets, coordinate shopping for and promoting efforts to affect inventory costs. With sufficient on-line help, meme shares can keep elevated inventory costs whatever the underlying firm’s price.

Part of the motivation behind the net help for sure meme shares comes from hedge funds’ brief positions in these corporations.

Hedge funds are sorts of investments that pool cash collectively from rich buyers, and brief promoting is once you borrow shares from a dealer and instantly promote them with the hope that the inventory worth will fall. If it does, you’ll be able to repurchase the shares on the cheaper price, return them to the brokerage and hold the distinction as revenue.

But the inventory worth might rise as a substitute of fall. So in case you promote the inventory you borrowed for $10, after which its worth rises to $50, you are liable for these shares, which means you are on the hook for that $40 you owe the dealer. And if the inventory worth rises to $500, you will owe that distinction.

Meme inventory historical past

When GameStop exploded in worth in January 2021, hedge funds — betting on its failure — discovered themselves in that place. In August 2020, Reddit person Roaring Kitty posted a video outlining recreation retailer GameStop’s plans to revamp its enterprise mannequin


When on-line buyers understood the brief positions in opposition to GameStop, individuals took it on as a Robin Hood-like journey (typically utilizing the buying and selling app Robinhood to take action). As a end result, hordes of buyers began shopping for GameStop inventory, making it very costly for the hedge funds to purchase again from their brief positions.

After the GameStop incident, some hedge funds suffered vital monetary losses, whereas some retail buyers made thousands and thousands. Other meme shares emerged after GameStop, some with various levels of success.

People realized main investing classes throughout the craze, whether or not buyers made cash from meme shares or not. According to the Schwab Q1 Trader Sentiment Survey, 35% of Charles Schwab and TD Ameritrade merchants are extra conscious of their threat tolerance and issue it in earlier than making momentum-based trades after the meme inventory frenzy. And 22% are extra cautious concerning the sources they use for his or her funding analysis; moreover, 15% are extra cautious about diversifying their portfolios.

Meme inventory examples

GameStop might have began the meme inventory mania, however others have adopted in its footsteps. The following corporations have additionally been thought of meme shares:

  • AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. (AMC).

  • Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (BBBY).

  • Robinhood Markets Inc. (HOOD).

  • Vinco Ventures Inc. (BBIG).

Terms linked to meme shares

Meme inventory buyers have developed a selected vernacular relating to investing. Here are some phrases you could come across in case you spend time on WallStreetBets or different comparable boards:

  • ATH: An abbreviation for “all-time high.”

  • BT(F)D: An abbreviation for “buy the (f——) dip.” Refers to purchasing the inventory “on sale” when costs are low. Learn extra about shopping for the dip.

  • Diamond palms: This refers to an investor who will maintain onto a inventory regardless of vital losses.

  • Paper palms: The reverse of “diamond hands,” paper palms usually tend to promote their shares  — typically to the ridicule of diamond palms.

  • Tendies: Slang for rooster tenders; this refers to any income buyers make from meme shares.

  • To the moon: If a inventory goes “to the moon,” customers usually imply that it’s rising considerably, probably with no limits.

Can I generate profits with meme shares?

While it’s doable to generate profits with meme shares, it’s an especially dangerous enterprise. Meme inventory investing depends on attempting to time the market, which people, even these professionally educated, are notoriously dangerous at. It additionally depends upon realizing which shares will pop and which will not — which is basically inconceivable.

Some of the extra widespread meme shares, reminiscent of AMC and notably GameStop, proceed to have increased inventory costs than earlier than the brief squeezes in 2021. Others, reminiscent of Nokia, are trending much like pre-pandemic lows.

Risking cash in speculative investments will be exhilarating, however it’s hardly ever the trail to long-term wealth. Investing in low-cost index funds and thru tax-advantaged retirement accounts reminiscent of IRAs has a better probability of success than counting on dangerous investing methods.

If you are fascinated with shopping for and promoting meme shares, remember that you’ll in all probability must pay taxes in your income. Capital positive factors tax charges are particularly excessive on shares you held for lower than a 12 months.