Wednesday marked a historic day for numerous "meme" stocks, as retail investors helped the share prices of companies such as AMC (NYSE: AMC), BlackBerry (NYSE: BB), Gamestop (NYSE: GME), and Bed Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ: BBBY) soar to record-highs.
AMC shares nearly doubled on Wednesday, with the cinema chain's shares closing up 95% by the end of the day and peaked at $72.62. This rally followed the company's announcement of rewarding their investors with free popcorn and exclusive screenings this summer.
As a result, AMC became the most traded stock on US exchanges Wednesday, and the high volume caused trading to be halted twice on the NYSE during the day. The company has now seen a 450% increase over the past month and a 3,325% increase since the beginning of the year, pushing AMC's market valuation to over $30 billion.
The surge occurred even after a major hedge fund, Mudrick Capital, sold its nearly $231 million stake in AMC just after purchasing the shares from the company.
As of mid-March this year, retail investors made up more than 80% of AMC's ownership. The company also announced on Wednesday that it would be launching a network called "AMC Investor Connect" to stay in touch with its investors.