As the market wades through what many people hope is a sixth bull year, some have grown nervous about how long the run can go.
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General Motors is upgraded to 'overweight.'
Wednesday's noteworthy upgrades include:
Trying to find a stock I like simply because the S&P 500 is breaking out just isn’t my style.
The S&P 500 ($INX) has hit the levels that everyone can call breakout at the exact same time that I am struggling to find stocks to buy.
I know that sounds counterintuitive, but here's the deal. In an ETF-dominated world, the technicians rule. If the fundamentals mattered, you wouldn't want to own the ETF, you would want to own the best of breed in the sector. But if the technicals are in charge, you just wait to see that breakout and you plow in.
As production ramps up in Mexico, this miner offers investors an opportunity to profit from rising silver prices.
By Tyler Laundon, Small Cap Investor
The Fed's move in early December to essentially backstop the entire global financial system by becoming the lender of last resort is bullish for precious metals over the long term. My favorite way to play this trend is to purchase emerging gold and silver producers. Accordingly, my favorite stock for 2012 is Fortuna Silver Mines (FSM).
The second rescue since 2004 will be tough to pull off.
Hostess Brands, the maker of Twinkies, Ho-Hos and Ding Dongs, filed for bankruptcy protection for the second time since 2004 in the face of mounting debt, skyrocketing prices for ingredients and the adoption of more healthful lifestyles.
The company, which has about $860 million in debt, sought protection from creditors after failing to reach an agreement with workers on pensions and benefits, according to Reuters. The company has arranged for $75 million in debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing from a group of its existing first-lien lenders, led by Silver Point Capital.
The US presidential election, the growing euro crisis and higher consumer confidence will influence markets this year.
By Anne Brennan, The Fiscal Times
Investors are looking ahead for 2012, but many will be hoping history repeats itself. They're placing bets not on a repeat of 2011 but on U.S. presidential history.
Since the end of WWII, the second half of a president's term and the period leading up to a presidential election have tended to coincide with economic growth and better business conditions.
The company is bulletproof and will be for a while. But be careful how you invest in it.
If it sounds too good to be true, it is. That axiom seems to be especially true for stocks. Yet as much as I'd like to say Apple (AAPL) is too good to be true, it isn't.
Believe me. I looked for ways to find fault in Apple: flawed technology, unattainable expectations, weakening sales, anything. The company is bulletproof and will be for at least a couple of more years. That doesn't mean you should buy into Apple indiscriminately, though.
The division is coming off a year in which operating income dropped significantly.
This ETF tracking smaller mining companies will follow precious metals higher as currencies lose purchasing power.
By Gene Arensberg, Got Gold Report
With the smaller, less liquid and more speculative junior miners and explorers having been "clocked" by a fearful market, we think making space in one's portfolio for the Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (GDXJ) makes sense.
The biopharmaceutical company has a bright outlook for 2012.
By: Zacks Equity Research
Celgene Corp. (CELG) announced preliminary fourth-quarter earnings of $1.05 a share, excluding stock-based compensation and other items, beating its year-ago performance by 46%.
The biopharmaceutical company also posted some strong full-year numbers, with earnings (excluding stock-based compensation and other items) climbing 36% to $3.79 a share.
The new year may be tougher for the chip maker after a solid 2011.
Our price estimate for Intel stands at $29, implying a premium of about 15% to the market price.
Early indication eases fears of a Dendreon-like flop.
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (REGN) needed to give investors an early signal that its new eye drug can keep pace in a competitive market. So the company blew away Wall Street's fourth-quarter sales estimates.
Shares of Regeneron jumped Tuesday morning after the company said its drug Eylea recorded as much as $25 million in sales in its first six weeks on the market. Analysts expected a little more than $3 million in sales.
The biggest surprise of 2012 could be that the financials, the most hated group out there, can actually soar.
You get tech moving, you get banks moving, you get the market moving. We are in a weird juncture when the groups that had been laggards are providing leadership, especially when no one believes the earnings for any of these stocks, other than Wells Fargo (WFC), USBancorp (USB) and Apple (AAPL), will have good quarters.
But that doesn't matter. Expectations are incredibly low for this quarter and I think they will even get lower following Alcoa’s (AA) report.
Don't count the greenback out yet.
By Dan Caplinger
In recent years, fears about the long-term prospects of the U.S. economy drove the dollar to historic lows against the local currencies of many countries around the world. Yet with the near-collapse of the euro and continuing problems with the impact that sovereign debt woes could have across the globe, Treasury bills have once again achieved safe-haven status, and the U.S. dollar is acting like the powerful reserve currency it once was.
On its face, that may sound like good news. But you may want to be careful what you wish for, because if dollar strength persists, it could have some serious consequences for prospects for economic growth in the U.S. as well as for your investments.
Twinkie maker is in the fight for its life.
As the Journal noted, times are tough for the privately held Irving, Tex. baker, which had been held up as a model of corporate restructuring since emerging from its first bankruptcy in 2009. Not only does the maker of Wonder Bread carry $860 million in debt, it owes "more than $50 million to vendors, which have been demanding payments on shortened time frames because of Hostess's financial condition," the paper said.
Some investors brag on message boards about achieving great returns on earnings-based trades. That was just dumb luck.
By Thomas Kee, guest columnist
Thanks to Alcoa (AA), earnings season is off to a positive start. But I predict that this earnings season will still leave investors with lots of questions unanswered -- questions about future growth rates and current market multiples.
In addition to Alcoa, I'm also looking for clues about the broader market's direction in results from Lennar (LEN), and JP Morgan Chase (JPM). In each case, I'll be looking to see if concerns about future growth come to the surface. I won't trade in these stocks, but I'll work the earnings news into my broader market thesis.
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[BRIEFING.COM] Equity indices strung together a daylong rally on Tuesday, giving the S&P 500 its sixth consecutive advance. Some selling during the final hour of action pressured the indices from their highs, but they still ended with the bulk of their gains. The benchmark index added 0.4% with eight sectors finishing in the green, while the Nasdaq (+1.0%) outperformed throughout the session.
Although the stock market began the day on a flat note, the major averages quickly took the ... More
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