These 4 Stocks Hit New Highs Friday Despite The Big Market Sell-Off

&l;p&g;&l;img class=&q;dam-image shutterstock size-large wp-image-1052690195&q; src=&q;https://specials-images.forbesimg.com/dam/imageserve/1052690195/960×0.jpg?fit=scale&q; data-height=&q;635&q; data-width=&q;960&q;&g; Shutterstock

Only 18 stocks on the New York Stock Exchange hit new 52-week highs Friday as the session came to a close for another week.&a;nbsp; That&s;s out of a total of about 28oo stocks listed there. It makes you wonder: what&s;s so special about these stocks that just kept going despite all of the selling going on around them? I looked up 4 of them on the &l;a href=&q;https://finviz.com/&q; target=&q;_blank&q;&g;Financial Visualization website&l;/a&g; to see what might make them so different. Here is what I found:

&l;/p&g;&l;ol&g;&l;li&g;&l;strong&g;Guess?&l;/strong&g; is the apparel manufacturer that had a great week after it reported much better earnings and sales than&a;nbsp; most expected. The good report on Thursday caused the stock to blast upward by a nice 28%. That good vibe continued on Friday for another 2.6% pop. Since February Guess? has moved from 14.5 to 21 before backing off just a bit in front of the weekend. In other words, the company held its gains and then some while almost all other stocks ended down for the week. The short float at 15% indicates that some do not believe this will continue — another way to look at it might be that if those shorts are forced to cover at some point, that would propel the stock higher.

&l;img class=&q;size-medium wp-image-2866&q; src=&q;http://blogs-images.forbes.com/johnnavin/files/2018/03/ges-3-24-18-j-300×225.jpg?width=960&q; alt=&q;&q; data-height=&q;225&q; data-width=&q;300&q;&g; Guess? chart

Also of interest: Guess? is paying a 4.4% dividend, a significantly better rate than the 10-year Treasury pays right now.&l;/li&g;

&l;li&g;&l;strong&g;Marathon Petroleum Company&l;/strong&g; hit 71 early in the day Friday — a new 52-week high for the oil and gas refining and marketing company — before backing off to a 71.28 close. In February the stock traded as low as 61, so that&s;s a sweet 16% gain in a little more than a month. This upward movement may come more from macro considerations than anything that Marathon is up to. With the Iran deal in question, the entire petroleum sector found buyers.

&l;img class=&q;size-medium wp-image-2867&q; src=&q;http://blogs-images.forbes.com/johnnavin/files/2018/03/mpc-3-24-18-j-300×225.jpg?width=960&q; alt=&q;&q; data-height=&q;225&q; data-width=&q;300&q;&g; Marathon chart

In addition, the new National Security Director at the White House, John Bolton, is said to favor confrontation over dialogue with Iran and that took oil prices higher, which benefited Marathon.&l;/li&g;

&l;li&g;&l;strong&g;Continental Resources&l;/strong&g; is an independent oil and gas operation that buyers liked because of the macro situation. After popping to a new high of 59.47 Friday, the stock backed off and closed at 58 even. Still a nice move if you consider that Continental traded as low as 47 in February. That&s;s a 23% gain off of lows in a very short time frame.

&l;img class=&q;size-medium wp-image-2869&q; src=&q;http://blogs-images.forbes.com/johnnavin/files/2018/03/clr-3-24-28-j-1-300×225.jpg?width=960&q; alt=&q;&q; data-height=&q;225&q; data-width=&q;300&q;&g; Continental Resources chart

Stifel and Deutsche Bank analysts both initiated buys on the stock last month. Others disagree: the short float on Continental sits at 14%. No dividend is paid.&l;/li&g;

&l;li&g;&l;strong&g;CurrencyShares Japanese Yen ETF&a;nbsp;&l;/strong&g;hit a new high of 91.52, up from a low of&a;nbsp; just under 85 earlier in the year. It&s;s not a stock as such, but since as an ETF traded among all the&a;nbsp; listed stocks on the NYSE, it&s;s worth acknowledging because of the considerable move upward recently. The global macro environment is at work and as the dollar has declined since the beginning of 2017, the yen has been much favored in the currency world.

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&l;img class=&q;size-medium wp-image-2870&q; src=&q;http://blogs-images.forbes.com/johnnavin/files/2018/03/fxy-3-24-18-j-300×225.jpg?width=960&q; alt=&q;&q; data-height=&q;225&q; data-width=&q;300&q;&g; CurrencyShares Japanese Yen chart.

Some analysts also cite the rise in the price of oil as&a;nbsp;another key factor possibly affecting the yen&s;s path.

None of these are buy or sell recommendations. Stocks hitting fresh highs sometimes continue and sometimes they don&s;t. Much more research would be needed. Check with a licensed financial advisor before making any stock market decisions.&l;/li&g;

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