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AMC extends gains as retail traders cheer announcement that it retired $35 million of its most expensive debt

  • AMC shares climbed Friday for the second day after the company announced it offloaded debt.
  • The movie theater chain repurchased $41.3 million of debt securities to lower its interest expense.
  • Shares are worth 16 times what they were at the beginning of the year amid the meme stock craze.

AMC shares extended their two-day gain to as much as 11% Friday after the retail-trader favorite announced it retired some of its most expensive debt.

The stock was up as much as 4% in premarket trading before paring the gain to around 3% after the opening bell. The move followed a gain of 7% in Thursday’s session. AMC shares were trading at $38.89 as of 10:16 a.m. ET Friday.

AMC’s $41.3 million repurchase of debt securities reduced its overall interest expenses, the company said in the statement.

“The repurchase of some of our highest cost debt is one of the many steps that we are taking to optimally position AMC for the future,” AMC Chief Executive Officer Adam Aron said in the Thursday statement.

AMC was trending on Twitter with the hashtag #AMCtothemoon. On Reddit’s Wall Street Bets, the company was the top mentioned stock in the last 24 hours with nearly 300 mentions, TopStonks data showed.

Aron has played into his company’s status as a meme stock this year, reaching out to retail investors through tweets, YouTube videos, and even offering ordinary investors AMC theater perks. The company is also planning to accept cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, the statement noted.

Though the movie-theater chain has flirted with bankruptcy in the past, it has raised money through multiple equity offerings this year, cashing in on the stock’s popularity with retail investors. In July though, the company shelved plans for a new share sale after investors rebuked the idea, and Aron vowed on Twitter to table any discussion of new sales through the end on 2021.

Analysts have previously said the company’s actual value is far detached from its stock price and likely much lower, thanks to its debt load, weak earnings, and share dilution.

The company’s shares are trading at about 16 times what they were worth at the beginning of the year.

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