Wall Street eyes cyber stocks in wake of Wannacry attack

Much of Monday’s activity on Wall Street centered around cybersecurity stocks in the wake of Friday's worldwide ransomware attack known as Wannacry and a closely-watched benchmark for cyber equities hit a 52-week high on gains by its high-profile component companies.

The PureFunds ISE Cyber Security Exchange-Traded Fund opened up 3 percent to a 52-week high of $31.00. The fund closed at $30.68, its highest in two years. ETFs are collections of securities such as stock in public companies that can be bought or sold on a public exchange.

Major government IT stocks listed in that ETF include Booz Allen Hamilton, KeyW Corp., Leidos, ManTech International and Science Applications International Corp. The fund also contains notable commercial identities Cisco, FireEye, Fortinet, Palo Alto Networks and Symantec.

This list shows respective share prices and changes:

  • Booz Allen up 1.3 percent to $36.47
  • KeyW up 5.9 percent to $8.75
  • Leidos up 0.2 percent to $52.89
  • ManTech up 1.9 percent to $38.77
  • SAIC up 1.3 percent to $74.53
  • Cisco up 2.3 percent to $34.23
  • FireEye up 7.5 percent to $15.90
  • Fortinet up 3.4 percent to $40.45
  • Palo Alto up 3.1 percent to $119.59
  • Symantec up 3.2 percent to $32.00

No government stocks in the PureFunds cyber ETF showed volume above their three-month averages but the shares in the commercial entities traded higher than normal:

  • Cisco: 26.4 million shares traded, three-month average of 18.7 million
  • FireEye: 26.8 million shares traded, three-month average of 6.3 million
  • Fortinet: 3.2 million shares traded, three-month average of 1.6 million
  • Palo Alto: 3.1 million shares traded, three-month average of 2.2 million
  • Symantec: 13.5 million shares traded, three-month average of 5.9 million

S&P 500-listed government IT stock CSRA rose 0.7 percent to $29.30 with 2.7 million shares traded versus the three-month average of nearly 948,000.

The European Union’s law enforcement agency Europol says at least 200,000 computers across 150 countries have been hit by the ransomware attack.

Also, analysts at Morgan Stanley upgraded their rating on Cisco’s stock and lifted their price target to $39.00 from $32.00 as the investment bank sees the company as able to record increases in security sales as customers upgrade IT equipment. Morgan Stanley also views Cisco’s mix of software and firewall activity as a positive that can help the company obtain a share of customers’ IT budgets.

About the Author

Ross Wilkers is a senior staff writer for Washington Technology. He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter: @rosswilkers. Also connect with him on LinkedIn.

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