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S&P launches new market cap rules; First Solar shares fall

Pedestrians pass in front of an Urban Outfitters store in New York.
Scott Mlyn | CNBC
Pedestrians pass in front of an Urban Outfitters store in New York.

New rules on S&P 500 market capitalization took effect Monday, impacting the inclusion of six stocks.

As of March 20, companies in the benchmark index must have a market capitalization of at least $6.1 billion, up from the prior criteria of $5.3 billion set in 2014, S&P said in a release earlier this month.

As a result of the new criteria, Advanced Micro Devices, Raymond James Financial and Alexandria Real Estate Equities replaced Urban Outfitters, Frontier Communications and First Solar, respectively, in the S&P 500 ahead of the open Monday. The three displaced stocks went into the S&P MidCap 400.

Shares of Arizona-based First Solar closed down nearly 5 percent Monday, while shares of Urban Outfitters fell almost 2 percent, and Frontier Communications was also down nearly 2 percent.

Advances Micro Devices' shares jumped 7 percent, while shares of Raymond James Financial and Alexandria Real Estate Equities were little changed by afternoon trade.

The stock inclusion adjustments were first announced on March 10.

The market cap criteria changes reflect the index committee's review of the S&P 500's gains in the last 12 months, David Blitzer, managing director of the S&P 500 Index Committee, said in a statement. The index is up 6 percent year-to-date, sitting at record highs.

S&P 500 year-to-date performance

Source: FactSet