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The stock is up 70% in the last year and isn't slowing down. But remember, this is still a volatile and risky pick.

By InvestorPlace Aug 12, 2014 2:05PM

File photo of a Tesla Model S outside the Tesla factory in Fremont, Calif. (© Paul Sakuma/AP)By Jeff Reeves


Tesla Motors (TSLA) hit a new record close on Monday, settling above $259 a share. That price was topped only by a previous intraday high of $265 set briefly during trading in February. Shares were down less than 1 percent on Tuesday.


When it comes to Tesla stock, it's always hard to put your finger directly on what's making shares move. But it seems like one of the big drivers (pardon the pun) for Tesla's most recent move was an upgrade from Deutsche Bank to "buy" with a price target of $310. That's up from a previous price target of $220.


It's actually kind of amusing, when you think about it, that Deutsche Bank never had a "buy" rating on Tesla stock to begin with. After all, this is one of the hottest stocks on Wall Street, with shares up 70 percent in the last year and about 680 percent since January 2013.

 
Tags: FGMTSLA

Macy's and other retailers are thriving, in fact, long after some observers predicted they would wither away.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 12, 2014 1:55PM
Credit: © Jin Lee/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Caption: Pedestrians cross the street in front of the Macy's Inc. flagship store in New York, U.S.By Phil Wahba, Fortune

Beating up on department stores is a favorite pastime of retail haters. 


And yet, despite accusations of having a passé business model, dusty stores and an aging customer base, U.S. department stores have staged a comeback in the last two years -- and are arguably more vital than they have been in a long time.


Just look at the Wall Street forecasts for the retailers' comparable sales (sales at stores open at least a year plus e-commerce) reports expected in the next week: Macy's (M) is expected to report a 4 percent jump on Wednesday, while J.C. Penney (JCP) should post a 5.8 percent increase and Nordstrom (JWN) a 3.2 percent rise on Thursday, according to Thomson Reuters data. 

 

The 2 heavily financed upstarts aim to supplant the taxi industry. It's already a bitter fight.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 12, 2014 12:43PM
Credit: © Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Caption: The Uber Technologies Inc. application and logo are displayed on a smartphoneBy Douglas Macmillan, The Wall Street Journal

Forget Apple (AAPL) versus Google (GOOG). The fiercest battle in the tech capital may well be between two heavily financed upstarts plotting the demise of the taxi industry -- and each other.


Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc. operate just blocks from each other in San Francisco, yet their bitter war has spilled into dozens of cities where they are racing to provide the default app for summoning a ride within minutes.


The two rivals are undercutting each other's prices, poaching drivers and co-opting innovations, increasingly blurring the lines between the two services.

 

They are deal-less sectors in a deal-filled world, and that's what's making them suffer.

By Jim Cramer Aug 12, 2014 12:42PM

Atlanta's skyline with Bank of America Plaza and SunTrust Plaza © Danita Delimont/Getty ImagesWhen we talk about mergers and acquisitions, we think they run the gamut of industries. In fact, they don't, and the two areas where we have seen no consolidation are the two areas whose stocks are just acting horrendously at this moment. This makes sense. When there is no consolidation, there's no ability to rationalize and take out costs. Without consolidation, there's way too much competition. Without takeovers, you just can't boost estimates, the lifeblood of all positive stock moves.


Which two industries am I talking about? The banking stocks and the industrials.

I have watched the sickening dribs-and-drabs sell-off in the banking group for what seems like ages now. My Action Alerts Plus charitable trust has watched SunTrust (STI), which reported a terrific quarter, see its shares pretty much give up a few pennies a day, except for the days when it gives up $0.25 or $0.30. It's totally gut-wrenching. I look at the stock of Wells Fargo (WFC) and I wonder what happened to that spike to $53 on that fabulous quarter. KeyCorp (KEY), which was knocking on $15's door, now looks like it can slice through $13.

 

Money is pouring in now that lending is up. But executives still say rising regulatory costs are hurting their businesses.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 12, 2014 12:04PM
Credit: © Chris Minerva/Getty Images
Caption: A bank sign on a buildingBy Robin Sidel and Saabira Chaudhuri, The Wall Street Journal

Banks are lending to companies and individuals at the fastest pace since the financial crisis, helping propel profits to near-record levels.


U.S. banks posted $40.24 billion in net income during the second quarter, the industry's second-highest profit total in at least 23 years, according to data from research firm SNL Financial. The latest profits are just below the record $40.36 billion recorded in the first quarter of 2013.


The rebound comes even as bank executives say rising costs of regulation are hurting their businesses.

 

The clothing retailer will announce its second-quarter earnings after the close on Thursday. Brian Sozzi dives into why the company may surprise Wall Street, again.

By TheStreet.com Staff Aug 12, 2014 11:48AM

Customers shop at a J.C. Penney store, in New York © Mark Lennihan/APBy Brian Sozzi, TheStreet


JC Penney (JCP) could positively surprise Wall Street once again when it announces second-quarter earnings and third-quarter guidance on Aug. 14 after the close.


Should it do so, likely soon-to-depart chief executive officer Mike Ullman and his team will gain a good bit of support in the investment community as they strongly telegraphed the quarter and outlook.


There is no hiding that due to inclement weather, the first quarter was disappointing for the nation’s department stores. According to Bloomberg data, four of six department stores with a $2 billion market cap or greater met lowered Wall Street earnings expectations, with Sears (SHLD) and Kohl’s (KSS) falling shy. On average, first-quarter gross profit margins for the department store sector declined 40 basis points year over year, as compiled by Bloomberg, with retailers having rushed to mark down spring merchandise to make way for summer collections. Even Macy’s (M), long viewed as the best operator in the department store sector, notched a 1.6 percent same-store sales decline in the quarter, though reaffirmed its fiscal year earnings per share guidance of $4.40 to $4.50.

 

The company's stock price drops Monday as investors digest the publication's claims that a merger with Trulia could lead to a cut in value.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 11, 2014 4:42PM
File photo of the Zillow Inc. website (© Scott Eells/Bloomberg via Getty Images)By Myles Udland, Business Insider

Zillow (Z) shares could fall 50 percent, writes Bill Alpert in this week's Barron's cover story

On July 28, Zillow announced a $3.5 billion merger with Trulia (TRLA), its online real estate rival. The deal, which was comprised entirely of stock, sent the shares of both companies soaring, but since then Zillow has stumbled, falling about 12 percent, while Trulia is up 3 percent.


In Monday trading following Barron's story, shares of both companies closed down nearly 3 percent. 


Alpert writes that Zillow bulls have dubbed the combination "Godzulia" on hopes the two sites will grab "a big piece of the $10 billion that realtors spend annually on advertising."

 
Tags: TRLAZ

The stock begins a promising bounce, boosted by sales growth in China.

By InvestorPlace Aug 11, 2014 4:24PM

Credit: © Scott Eells/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Caption: Coach Inc. handbags are displayed in New YorkBy Serge Berger, Beat the Bell


Luxury goods designer and producer Coach (COH) reported better-than-expected fiscal fourth-quarter results before the start of trading last Tuesday, which led to a good and technically significant rally in Coach stock.


Shares rallied further last Friday, thus confirming Tuesday's move and putting Coach in a good mood chock full of upside momentum in which active investors can partake.


Specifically, Coach earnings came to 59 cents per share -- and while that was down 66 percent year-over-year, it did top analyst forecasts by 6 cents. Revenues, meanwhile, stood at $1.14 billion, down 7 percent but also ahead of analyst estimates for $1.09 billion.

 

Tekmira Pharmaceuticals' stock price rose another 15% Monday after gaining more than 45% on Friday.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 11, 2014 4:03PM
Ultrastructural morphology displayed by an Ebola virus virion is revealed in this undated handout colorized transmission electron micrograph
© Umaru Fofana/ReutersBy Myles Udland, Business Insider

The Ebola trade is still intact.

Shares of Tekmira Pharmaceuticals (TKMR) were up another 20 percent on Monday after gaining more than 45 percent on Friday after the FDA loosened a hold on the Ebola treatment in the company's development pipeline. 


After closing on Thursday afternoon at $14.27 per share, Tekmira shares were trading north of $23 on Monday. 


In Thursday evening's press release, Tekmira said, "the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has verbally confirmed they have modified the full clinical hold placed on the TKM-Ebola Investigational New Drug Application (IND) to a partial clinical hold. This action enables the potential use of TKM-Ebola in individuals infected with Ebola virus."

 

The state has staked most of its economy on energy, and now it's getting eclipsed by brighter oil stars.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 11, 2014 3:46PM
Credit: © Paul Souders/Corbis

Caption: Offshore oil rigs in Cook Inlet, AlaskaBy Cassandra Sweet and Jim Carlton, The Wall Street Journal

Since joining the Alaska oil rush in the early 1980s, Richard Repper has jumped from project to project in the state, with no job more than a three-hour flight from Soldotna, a town about 70 miles south of Anchorage.


But last fall, he began working in North Dakota, more than 2,000 miles away. A construction manager for an oil field services company, the 60-year-old Mr. Repper is finding more opportunity in the Bakken Shale oil fields than on Alaska's North Slope. He returned to his farmhouse here for just two weeks between Halloween and Easter.


"The job keeps getting longer and longer," says his wife Irene. "I didn't know he would be working so much."


The energy boom sweeping North America is producing an unexpected loser: Alaska.

 

If the alcohol becomes a casualty in the ongoing sanctions war between the countries, the US won't be too upset.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 11, 2014 3:13PM
Credit: © Todd Williamson/AP Photo
Caption: Russian Standard VodkaBy Angela Johnson, MarketWatch

Russian vodka's heyday may be over -- at least in the U.S.


As the United States and Russia wage economic warfare in the form of sanctions, if the flow of Russian vodka entering the U.S. were to decrease to a trickle, it is doubtful that American consumers would even notice.


In 2013, the amount of vodka imported from Russia into the U.S. dropped 70 percent from the prior year, according to the Distilled Spirits Council of the US (DISCUS) based on U.S. government data. Also, none of the top 10 selling vodka brands in the U.S. was from Russia.


"Americans won't lose any sleep over that because there are so many brands that are American," said Victorino Matus, author of the book "Vodka."

 
Tags: DEOSTZ

Worried by geopolitical turmoil as well as disappointing earnings results, some strategists have soured on these names.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 11, 2014 2:43PM
Credit: © Tim Shaffer/Reuters
Caption: A worker loads a shipment of boxes at an Amazon.com warehouse facilityBy Philip van Doorn, MarketWatch

The benchmark Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX) is up 3 percent this year, despite two big declines over the past two weeks.


With the escalating round of sanctions among Russia, the U.S. and Western European countries over the conflict in Ukraine, and President Obama's decision to strike Islamic State extremists in Iraq, there's no shortage of worry for investors. 


But the fact is that the drop in share prices for many companies has been caused by disappointing operating results.


As a result, analysts have cut 2015 earnings per share estimates, adding to companies' woes.


So here are the 10 S&P 500 stocks that have suffered the greatest declines to consensus 2015 estimates, among analysts polled by FactSet, since June 30:

 

But there won't be many new highs going forward, adds Marc Faber.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 11, 2014 1:36PM
Credit: © Image Source/Corbis
Caption: Bull and Bear MarketsBy Jenny Cosgrave, CNBC

Perennial bear Marc Faber said Monday that markets have recovered from a "fully oversold" condition and a rebound in stocks was now underway, but warned that new highs in equities were unlikely.


Faber, editor of the Gloom, Boom & Doom Report, told CNBC if new highs were reached, it would a result in just a "limited number of shares making new highs."


"We had a significant correction in many shares, and as of [the] Thursday night close, the markets on a very short-term basis were extremely oversold with only 20 percent of shares above the 50 day moving average," Faber said on "Squawk Box."

 

One analyst now expects the car manufacturer to exceed previous volume expecations over the next several years.

By TheStreet.com Staff Aug 11, 2014 1:14PM

The Tesla logo, on the front of a Tesla Model S luxury electric car parked in the lot at Tesla Headquarters, Palo Alto, Calif. © REX/ZUMABy Chris Ciaccia, TheStreet


Tesla Motors (TSLA) has been impressive since coming to the forefront of investors' minds in late 2012, but the opportunity ahead may be more impressive than almost anyone has imagined, so far.


Deutsche Bank analyst Rod Lache upgraded Tesla to "buy" with a $310 price target, noting that the company's growth trajectory "will be much steeper, their mix will be much richer, and their costs will ultimately be much lower than we previously assumed." He's now expecting Tesla to have volumes of 129,000 units in 2017, up from a previous estimate of 83,000. He also expects volumes of 60,000 and 100,000 in 2015 and 2016, up from 51,000 and 60,000, respectively.


Shares of Tesla were rising in early Monday trading, gaining 2.7 percent to $254.80.

 

The stock has dropped sharply in recent weeks -- and now looks quite attractive.

By MSN Money Partner Aug 11, 2014 1:07PM
Credit: © Mel Evans/AP Photo
Caption: A Marlboro cigarette burns as it sits on a pack of cigarettesBy Michael Brush, MarketWatch

For a contrarian investor, few companies can get the juices flowing like one with a product considered so venal that it's banned in much of New York City.


I'm talking about cigarettes -- now so despised that even fiercely independent New Yorkers accept a prohibition on smoking in public.


This kind of negativity helps explain why the stock of one of the companies that's best at selling smokes, Philip Morris International (PM), has dropped sharply in recent weeks -- and now looks quite buyable.


Of course "best" here means that Philip Morris does a great job of selling a product that is highly addictive and unhealthy. If that makes you queasy, take a pass. If you believe in free choice, though, this is a good name to put in your portfolio right now -- for market outperformance, and a solid 4 percent dividend yield.

 
Tags: MOPM

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