MicroStrategy's Bitcoin, Okta, Morgan Stanley: Top Tickers – Yahoo Finance

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Shares of MicroStrategy (MSTR) are climbing as bitcoin (BTC-USD) has surpassed the benchmark of $30,000 and continues to climb. Microstrategy is one of the largest corporate holders of bitcoin, with over 158,00 BTC.
On Friday, October 20, Okta (OKTA) announced it was hit with a data breach by hackers who were able to view certain files uploaded by customers. The stock has shed more than 19% of its value in the past 5 days as sentiment for the company remains low after the announcement.
Morgan Stanley (MS) has traded at its lowest levels since 2021 after Odeon Capital’s Richard Bove cut his rating of the company, citing leadership uncertainty. Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman claims he will retire in 2024 but there is currently no official replacement.
Yahoo Finance Anchors Julie Hyman and Josh Lipton break down how the market is reacting to this news and what investors need to keep in mind going forward.
For more expert insight and the latest market action, click here to watch this full episode of Yahoo Finance Live.
JULIE HYMAN: To look at some of the movers that we are watching on the day, let’s take a look at some of them, starting with the crypto space. Because MicroStrategy in particular getting a lift in today’s trading session, along with that lift in Bitcoin. Its Bitcoin bet is back in the green, as Bitcoin goes back above 31,000 on, of course, what’s been a volatile year for cryptocurrencies.
We see that long time long there back in the green. That’s because MicroStrategy says that its average purchase price for more than 4 and 1/2 billion dollars in Bitcoin that it holds was $29,582.
JOSH LIPTON: Yep.
JULIE HYMAN: So it’s back in the green for now.
JOSH LIPTON: Back in the green.
JULIE HYMAN: For now.
JOSH LIPTON: Yeah per Bloomberg. Saylor began buying Bitcoin, of course–
JULIE HYMAN: Michael Saylor that is, yeah.
JOSH LIPTON: A few years ago 2020, ramped up his purchases this year. And Bitcoin has recovered some in part on these hopes that we talk a lot about. Hopes of a spot Bitcoin, ETF that has crypto fans very excited about maybe what that means for inflows. And MicroStrategy, by the way, has been riding that wave right along with it, with shares up about 165% this year.
JULIE HYMAN: Yeah. And Michael Saylor stepped down as CEO of MicroStrategy last year. He’s now just chairman, because he said he wanted to focus more on that Bitcoin strategy. If you’re a critic of the company you could say, well, that Bitcoin strategy didn’t work out so well for them when Bitcoin was below their break even level, if you will.
So this is one of the companies that’s really, whose fortunes is tied most closely to Bitcoin. Not because of its core business, it’s an enterprise software business, but because it has so much Bitcoin in its balance sheet, and some investors even see it as a proxy for the cryptocurrency.
JOSH LIPTON: Yeah. And fans and critics alike can tune in on November 1 when they report earnings.
JULIE HYMAN: Yes.
JOSH LIPTON: That’ll be a good one. All right, moving on. Okta shares, check this one, out under pressure. That’s a nice way to put it, after the company revealed on Friday it had notified customers of a data breach. Evercore ISI noting that these events will most likely have a near-term impact on Okta’s sales.
So this one is interesting, Julie. Hackers apparently able to view some files uploaded by certain Okta customers. Bloomberg pointing out about 184 customers is what we’re talking about. So it’s about 1% of total were impacted. Of course, though, there was that August warning from Okta about attackers as well.
Rob Owens over at Piper, financial analyst, knows this company very well, been covering them a long time. He says given the small scope of the intrusion, we expect minimal disruption to the business and impact on forward demand. That was the good news. But Rob is quick to point out he does acknowledge that sentiment is likely going to remain under pressure in the near term, and we are certainly seeing that in today’s trade.
JULIE HYMAN: Yeah. And even there are other analysts who say you could actually see a hit to the company’s earnings as a result of this, even though it is relatively small here. Evercore adding the stock to its tactical underperform list, that doesn’t sound good, right? And they pointed out that this could have a near-term impact on the company’s pipelines, and could force a downward revision to the company’s fiscal 2024 estimates. So something that investors are, that two-year chart is pretty ugly for Okta too.
JOSH LIPTON: It’s rough.
JULIE HYMAN: Down more than 70%. Let’s also take a look at Morgan Stanley. Those shares closing near the lowest level since 2021. That comes after Odeon capital’s Dick Bove cut his rating on the stock to hold. He cited leadership uncertainty. Of course, CEO James Gorman said in May he was going to retire at some point in the next 12 months. But there’s nobody to replace him, or at least not anybody that the company has confirmed is going to be his replacement.
And, of course, Bove really just repeating or reflecting some of the concern that’s already out there on the street. That they have other potential people to replace Gorman, Andy Saperstein, Ted Pick, Dan Simkowitz, are some of the folks internally that have been talked about. But we don’t know who it’s going to be.
JOSH LIPTON: Yeah. Well, and we both know Dick Bove. He has been tracking the banks for a while. To your point, we did hear this from other analysts as well. Just last week when Morgan Stanley reported and very clearly disappointed the street. You saw that big drop, that was something the analysts had brought up and wanted more clarity about who’s taking charge of the c-suite, and some of them were frustrated, as Mr. Bove is, that they’re not getting that.
JULIE HYMAN: Yeah. You can see again the chart there. The five years are looking a little more positive, but then it’s gone sideways here as investors want to see more from Morgan Stanley.
JOSH LIPTON: Yep. All right, we’ll wait.
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