Want to Make $1,000 in 2 Weeks? Buy 99 Shares of J&J Stock.

Many individual investors are trying to do that by purchasing 99 shares of

Johnson & Johnson

to take advantage of the “odd-lot” rule in the company’s $40 billion exchange offer for

The potential payoff if things go right is more than $1,000.

That payoff, however, isn’t guaranteed because it hinges on the near-term stock prices of the two companies. 

The opportunity arises because the Johnson & Johnson (ticker: JNJ) exchange offer for Kenvue (KVUE), which holds the consumer health business formerly owned by J&J, allows holders of less than 100 shares of J&J stock—or an odd lot —to get a full allocation of Kenvue if they submit all their shares.

Other J&J shareholders are likely to be prorated, meaning they won’t get a full allocation of Kenvue. It’s tough to peg the proration now but based on other corporate exchange offers in the past decade it could be in the 20% to 40% range, meaning participating J&J holders would get just 20% to 40% of their stock converted into Kenvue shares.

The tax-free J&J exchange offer is the largest ever and promises to generate significant interest from retail investors. J&J is one of the most widely held stocks by individuals along with such blue chips like

Exxon Mobil


J&J announced the exchange offer on July 24, and it is due to expire on Friday, Aug. 18. J&J plans to exchange 1.5 billion shares of Kenvue, which owns Band-Aid, Listerine, Tylenol and other brands, for its own shares.  J&J took Kenvue public in May.

If J&J holders do nothing, they won’t participate in the exchange offer. They need to voluntarily opt in to participate. The exchange offer amounts to a giant J&J stock buyback of about 8% of its shares financed with its $40 billion Kenvue holding.

J&J is offering holders an incentive to make the exchange—known as a split-off on Wall Street—of about 7.5%, or roughly $107.50 in Kenvue stock for…


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