Avon shares whipsaw on Oprah stake rumors

Oprah NOT taking stake in Avon

Shares of Avon Products whipsawed Wednesday afternoon after a spokesperson for Oprah Winfrey denied rumors of an investment in the company.

Avon's stock spiked as much as 17 percent to a one-month high of above $4 on unsubstantiated reports that the media mogul would take a stake in the cosmetics company, before paring those gains to a rise of around 6.6 percent in late trading, Reuters reported. A spokesperson for Winfrey told CNBC the rumor that the star was taking a stake in Avon was untrue.

Avon headquarters in New York.
Fake Avon takeover bid is 'a cautionary tale'

Shares of Avon are down about 60 percent over the past year, after April reports that it might explore "strategic alternatives" like the sale of its North American business.

This isn't the first time the company's shares have wavered on gossip. The stock spiked about 20 percent in May after a hoax takeover bid.

— Reuters contributed to this report.