Matson’s stock suffering biggest-ever selloff after new competition concerns prompt downgrades

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Shares of shipping company Matson Inc.












MATX, -22.35%










were suffering the biggest selloff since they started trading in January 1972, amid concerns over a new competitor to its West Coast-to-Hawaii shipping business. The stock’s price drop of $7.09, or 24%, was shaving about 43 points off the Dow Jones Transportation Average












DJT, -0.62%










which was up 3 points in midday trade. The selloff topped the previous record of the $6.76, or 16.2%, drop on Nov. 8, 2016, according to FactSet data. TOTE Inc. announced Thursday plans to establish a new domestic shipping service to Hawaii, with plans to use new environmentally advanced containerships in 2020. Stephens Inc. analyst Jack Atkins downgraded Matson to equal weight from overweight and slashed his stock price target to $23 from $36, citing competition concerns in Matson’s core shipping lane. “If it materializes, we think this could be a material headwind to profitability and, as such, we would anticipate significant multiple contraction for MATX in the interim and an extended period of volatility and uncertainty for the stock,” Atkins wrote in a note to clients. Wells Fargo’s Michael Webber downgraded Matson to underperform from market perform and cut his target to $22 from $35. The stock has tumbled 37% year to date, while the S&P 500












SPX, -0.18%










has gained 8.8%.

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