This MSI gaming laptop has a $450 price cut at GameStop today

MSI has been a bit of a juggernaut recently when it comes to its products; whether it’s motherboards, graphics cards, or computers, MSI has a little something for everybody, and if you’re looking for a gaming laptop, the MSI Alpha 17 is a great option. While gaming laptops can be expensive, especially when they’re 17 inches, this deal from GameStop brings it down to a very reasonable $840, down from $1,299 and a $459 discount.

Why you should buy the MSI Alpha 17

The most immediate concern when it comes to larger screens is whether the graphics card can handle running games on it, but the screen on the MSI Alpha 17 is a 144Hz Full HD monitor, so it isn’t going to be pushing the graphics card too much. Luckily, you also get a Radeon RX6600M GPU, roughly equivalent to an RTX 3060 if you’re unfamiliar with the AMD lineup, so it can easily handle both the resolution and refresh rate even on modern AAA games on relatively high settings. You can also grab a gaming monitor deal if you want to use your laptop as a desktop replacement for when you’re at home, and the GPU should handle it relatively well if you’re aiming for either high resolution or high refresh rate.

As for the CPU, you get a mid-tier Ryzen 7 5800H, roughly the same as an Intel i7, which means no bottlenecking with the GPU, and more than enough processing power to do simulation and strategy gaming, which tends to eat up resources. As for RAM, you get 16GB of DDR4, which is more than most folks need and gives you some headroom regarding apps and browser tabs. However, storage is on the low side, with only a 512GB SSD, meaning you’ll likely want to grab an external hard drive deal to help supplement that.

Overall, the MSI Alpha 17 is a great gaming laptop if you want a bigger screen without putting a dent in your wallet, which is usually the case with all-AMD PCs, and with the deal from GameStop, you can grab it for just $840, a $459 discount on its normal $1,299 price. On the other hand, if you want a few more options, check out these great gaming laptop deals.

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GameStop SEC investigation outed as new meme stock CLOV takes focus

GameStop has revealed that the US SEC is investigating its highly volatile stock, confirming that the retailer received an official request for documents related to the wild rise and fall of $GME this year. The shares have been a key element of the so-called “meme stock” surge in 2021, where small investors – often led in packs by Reddit groups – target otherwise nondescript stock and attempt to squeeze short holders in the process.

It’s led to huge fluctuations in $GME, and the creation – and indeed destruction – of paper millionaires as the market tries to adapt. Earlier this year, popular trading platforms like Robinhood clamped down on meme stock trading, in some cases preventing customers from buying more GameStop shares.

Now, though those limits have since been lifted, the US Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the GameStop situation as part of a broader probe into meme stock activity. While the SEC has not detailed the investigation yet, GameStop confirmed this week that it had been approached with a voluntary request for documents and other information. The company says it is complying with the request.

“On May 26, 2021, we received a request from the Staff of the SEC for the voluntary production of documents and information concerning a SEC investigation into the trading activity in our securities and the securities of other companies,” GameStop said in a Form 10-Q filing this week. “We are in the process of reviewing the request and producing the requested documents and intend to cooperate fully with the SEC Staff regarding this matter. This inquiry is not expected to adversely impact us.”

GameStop, for its part, has been upfront about the fact that the surges and slumps in its share price have had little to do with actual business performance or practices. In a statement this week, added to its December 2020 Class A Common Stock prospectus, the retailer highlighted that forces beyond its operations were shaping its stock.

“Our common stock has recently experienced extreme volatility in price and trading volume,” GameStop acknowledged. “From January 11, 2021 to June 8, 2021, the closing price of our common stock on the NYSE ranged from as low as $19.94 to as high as $347.51 and daily trading volume ranged from approximately 1,790,000 to 197,200,000 shares. During this time, we have not experienced any material changes in our financial condition or results of operations that would explain such price volatility or trading volume.”

Currently, GameStop stock is priced at just above $247 at time of publication, down over $55 since the market opened on Thursday, June 10. Meanwhile, AMC’s popular share has dipped considerably since last week’s highs, down $9 today, while a new meme stock contender arose, with insurance seller Clover ($CLOV) seeing a surge in interest earlier this week, though a dip again as the markets opened today.

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Xbox Series X restocked at GameStop, but with a catch

Those of you trying to get your hands on an Xbox Series X might have some luck today at GameStop. While the console’s underpowered counterpart, the Xbox Series S, has been a little easier to find in recent days, the Xbox Series X still seems to be as hard to find as ever. That’s what makes this particular GameStop restock exciting – assuming you’re willing to put up with limited buying options.

Those looking to pick up an Xbox Series X from GameStop don’t have the option of paying for one in full. Instead, buyers will have to purchase the console through Xbox All Access, which splits up the cost of the Xbox Series X and 24 months of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate into 24 monthly payments. That comes in at $34.99 per month for two years, so if you don’t have $500 on hand to put toward an Xbox Series X right this instant, this could be a good option.

Of course, not everyone wants to pay for 24 months of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, and there’s no denying that add-on makes this much more expensive than just buying an Xbox Series X on its own. The Xbox Series X is available through Xbox All Access with 0% APR for those who qualify, and while that’s nice, the total price you’ll pay for the entire package over 24 months is $839.76. If we assume $499.99 for the console and $14.99 per month for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, that works out to $859.75 total, so you’re essentially saving $20 over purchasing the console and 24 months of Game Pass Ultimate separately by going the All Access route.

So, All Access is definitely worth it, assuming that you qualify for it, you pay off the full cost within 24 months, and you’ll actually get some use out of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. Keep in mind that Ultimate includes Game Pass for both Xbox and PC (along with game streaming to Android devices) and Xbox Live Gold. Most Xbox Series X users will want to have an active Xbox Live Gold subscription, and while the necessity of Xbox Game Pass is more down to preference, it does provide a good value in terms of the games it offers.

In the end, if you’re looking for an Xbox Series X and want to have one as soon as possible, Xbox All Access could be the way to go as long as you’re okay with committing to paying it off over two years. As always, we’ll be keeping an eye out for more Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 restocks, so stay tuned for more.

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Why are investors buying GameStop shares again?

GameStop shares have gone soaring again. The Texan computer games retail chain at the heart of the stock market drama at the end of January surged from US$44 (£32) to a high of around US$200 on February 26 before sliding back to US$120 at the time of writing. Institutional investors who had “short positions” against the stock, meaning that they were betting it was going to go down, were said to have racked up nearly US$2 billion losses from the rises.

Other stocks involved in the first wave of retail trading mania such as cinema group AMC Entertainment have followed a similar trajectory, doubling at one point and still almost 50% up on the calm of a few days earlier. So why are investors buying these stocks again?

The army of millions of investors from Reddit’s WallStreetBets community pushed GameStop shares from US$20 to US$480 during the January “short squeeze”, in which they drove hedge funds like Melvin Capital into heavy losses, after forcing them to liquidate massive bets against the stock.

As the GameStop price fell back in early February, many of these small investors were counting their losses. There have since been countless debates over the mania, including a congressional hearing in the US on February 18.

The recriminations

Online trading apps at the center of the buying frenzy, such as Robinhood, have been variously accused of making it too easy for amateurs to take wild risks, enabling market manipulation, risking the financial stability of the wider system, and siding with hedge fund backers Citadel by heavily restricting buying in the stocks in question after prices rocketed.

Over the latter issue, multiple users filed lawsuits against Robinhood and Citadel, though according to a clause in Robinhood’s customer agreement, all disputes are to be settled in arbitration and not in the civil court system. Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev has denied the allegations, offering his own explanation at the congressional hearing.

Credit: House Financial Services Committee /