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Monster Stock Soars as Execs Buy and Investors Turn Optimistic

Consumers may be pessimistic about jobs, but investors clearly were not today, bidding up the stock of the three publicly held career sites.

So aggressive was the action on Monster in particular that its stock soared 21.45 percent today, leading the gainers on the S&P 500 Index. Monster’s shares closed the day at $9.91.

LinkedIn rose 6 percent today, closing at $87.49. Monday, LinkedIn was up 7.5 percent. Dice Holdings was up 2.16 percent to $10.40.

All three companies had a tough few days last week, with LinkedIn sinking on Thursday to $70.05, its lowest price since going public in May. It closed its first day of trading back then at $94.25, after hitting a high of almost $123 a share.

Monster, which has been drifting in the mid teens for months, started heading south in late July, closing on August 22 at a low of $7.13.  Friday, the stock began inching up, and Monday, despite news the company had replaced its CIO Darko Dejanovic, it continued to rise. Today, after the company reported that three of its senior executives cumulatively bought more than 87,000 shares, the stock took off. 

That news helped boost the stock price, giving the three — Chairman, President and CEO Sal Iannuzzi, CFO Jim Langrock,  and EVP Tim Yates — a one-day profit of more then $152,000. Keep in mind that all three men are holding other Monster stock bought or granted at a higher price.

Bloomberg’s take on the rise is that investors have more confidence than the population generally that the economy is improving, and that the President and Federal Reserve will encourage job growth.

Bloomberg quoted William Blair & Co. analyst Tim McHugh as saying of LinkedIn and Monster in particular, “The stocks had embedded a high probability of entering a recession, but have been rebounding along with the market on the hopes that we will be able to avoid the recession … The companies could benefit from economic stimulus or a jobs program.”

Dice, which sold for as much as $18.75 a share as recently as April, didn’t fall as much last week as either LinkedIn or Monster. Its lowest point was $8.51.

Friday, the Labor Department releases its August employment numbers. Economists expect only about 75,000 new jobs will have been created during the month, a sharp drop from July’s 117,000.

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