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Roaring Kitty and Warren Buffett — market or stock influencers?

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NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 14: Traders walk the floor during morning trading at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on May 14, 2024 in New York City. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up slightly in morning trading ahead of the release of new inflation numbers from the U.S. government. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
image of Traders walking the floor during morning trading at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in front of screen with stocks on May 14, 2024 in New York City.

“Roaring Kitty,” the X user behind the GameStop craze of 2021, returned to the internet this week and sparked a mini-rally for the videogame retailer that had investors questioning whether meme stocks were due for a comeback. But is it possible that one investor — and a cryptic X poster at that — can have so much influence? 

As the Wall Street Journal asked, is Roaring Kitty the internet’s Warren Buffett? Northeastern University economists Mark Hooker and Bob Triest say it is possible for an individual to influence individual stocks … to a point. But significantly influencing the overall market is basically impossible. 

“In the short run, individuals can potentially have an impact on the price of relatively thinly traded stocks through a combination of their own trading and through communicating their beliefs and actions to others,” says Triest, professor and chair of Economics at Northeastern. Triest says influencing a stock price is more likely if the stock in question is thinly traded (traded relatively infrequently) and the influencer investor has a lot of money and/or a high equity stake in the stock. 

Read more at Northeastern Global News.

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