Twitter’s stock ended up almost 7% on a mixed day for other tech stocks — and the rise seems to be based on a couple of bits of speculation.
First, fund manager Doug Kass of Seabreeze Partners made a 2015 prediction that Carl Icahn would take a 9.9% stake in Twitter, which would in turn spark a bidding war between Facebook and Twitter.
The thought here is that Icahn could work the same kind of influence that got Yahoo to replace Jerry Yang with Carol Bartz as CEO (although she turned out to be only the first in an ongoing series of CEO replacements). Icahn also called on eBay to split PayPal into a separate company, which it did in September.
Second, one of those many Yahoo CEOs — Ross Levinsohn, who acted as interim CEO for a few months before Marissa Mayer took charge — said on CNBC that Twitter should buy Yahoo’s core business. Analyst Robert Peck from Suntrust then wrote up 10 reasons why such a deal would make sense, including strong overlaps in audience and the combination of Yahoo’s programmatic ad platforms with Twitter’s direct advertising platforms.
Even though both reports were purely speculative, the hint of new possible avenues for growth was apparently enough to spark a rally.
Quite a day for Twitter, which suffered a pretty severe outage last night.