Jimmy Lai, the media mogul who owns the pro-democracy Apple Daily newspaper, warned investors not to buy his Next Digital Ltd. media empire’s stock because the company’s fundamentals don’t justify its recent rally. Moments later, the shares resumed their climb in Hong Kong.
“People with very little money just want to express their anger and express their support for our company,” Lai said in an interview with Bloomberg Television on Friday. “Everybody bought a little bit. That became a lot of it and jacked up the price. I was telling people ‘don’t do it, don’t do it, because you’re going to lose money.’”
The warning from Lai, who was released on bail Wednesday after becoming the most prominent pro-democracy activist to be arrested under Hong Kong’s new national security law, fell on deaf ears. Next Digital shares climbed as much as 42% Friday morning, resuming the roller-coaster ride the holding company’s been on this week. Lai denies he broke the law.