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The Return of Roaring Kitty: How a Social Media Star Ignited a GameStop Stock Surge

In the world of stock trading, few stories have captured public attention quite like that of Keith Gill, better known as “Roaring Kitty.” His influence on the stock market, particularly with GameStop, has led to a remarkable surge in the company’s stock once again, following his recent return to social media after nearly four years of silence. But who is Roaring Kitty, and why does his comeback matter to traders and non-traders alike?

From Humble Beginnings to Internet Sensation

Keith Gill grew up in Brockton, Massachusetts, and after graduating from Stonehill College, he embarked on a career in finance. He became a chartered financial analyst and worked at several financial institutions, including MassMutual. However, it was Gill’s activities outside of his formal job that catapulted him into the spotlight.

Under the moniker Roaring Kitty on YouTube and “deepf—ingvalue” on the Reddit forum r/WallStreetBets, Gill shared his investment insights and strategies. His real rise to fame began with his advocacy for investing in GameStop, a video game retailer that many had written off due to the rise of e-commerce and digital downloads.

The Case for GameStop

In 2019, Gill began detailing why he believed GameStop was a worthy investment despite its struggles and its stock being valued at barely $1. His argument was rooted in the potential for the company to rebound as the retail landscape evolved and gaming culture maintained its robust community. As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolded, causing lockdowns and leading to stimulus checks, more individuals turned to stock trading as a form of income and entertainment, which led to a surge in interest in GameStop’s stocks.

The Phenomenon of the Short Squeeze

GameStop’s stock price experienced an extraordinary rise from about $1 at the beginning of 2020 to over $80 by late January 2021. This was not just a simple case of a stock gaining favorable attention. Instead, it was a calculated move by a large group of amateur investors, inspired by Gill, to counteract the “shorts” from hedge funds—bets made by investors that the stock’s price would fall.

This practice, known as a short squeeze, involved driving up the stock’s price to inflict losses on those betting against it. As the stock rose, short sellers were compelled to purchase more shares to cover their positions, further driving up the price. This tactic led to significant losses for major hedge funds, including Melvin Capital, which required a bailout from other hedge funds to remain solvent.

The Backlash and Silence

The GameStop saga reached such heights that it caught the attention of Wall Street and lawmakers in Washington, D.C., leading to Gill and other key figures being called to testify before a House committee. After the hearings, Gill largely disappeared from the public eye, and GameStop’s stock returned to lower levels, though it saw occasional spikes.

A New Surge

Before Gill’s reappearance on social media, GameStop shares were already showing signs of another surge, climbing significantly in the days leading up to his post. His return seems to have rekindled interest in the stock, with prices jumping by 176 percent in just five days. This new activity underscores the ongoing influence Gill has over the market and particularly on the stocks associated with the meme stock frenzy of 2021.

Why It Matters

The story of Roaring Kitty and the GameStop surge is a modern tale of how social media and individual investors can influence the stock market, challenging established financial institutions. It highlights a shift in the investment world, where traditional barriers to entry are being broken down, and everyday investors can band together to wield significant influence.

As the market reacts to Gill’s latest movements, both seasoned traders and casual observers are reminded of the power of community-driven investment strategies in today’s digital age. Whether this latest surge will have the lasting impact of the previous frenzy or fizzle out remains to be seen, but it certainly keeps the market on its toes, watching what Roaring Kitty will do next.