You can still find small-cap superstars
Small-cap superstars still abound

There are some picks in this sector that have excellent valuations and strong earnings growth.


Apple is slipping in Europe.

By Motley Fool Pick of the Day Mar 1, 2012 2:38PM

By Rick Aristotle Munarriz


Ask anyone in this country what an iPhone costs, and most will say that Apple's (AAPL) iconic smartphone starts at $199. Models with more storage capacity will set stateside buyers back an additional $100 or $200.


However, this isn't what Apple is making. The world's most valuable tech company rang up an average of $659 per iPhone (including attached services and accessories) during the holiday quarter.


Adding another $2 billion debt to its balance sheet means reduced flexibility for Sprint, but Clearwire cheers the news.

By Trefis Mar 1, 2012 2:37PM
Image: Silver globe with twinkling lights (© Tetra Images/Getty Images)Sprint (S) is accessing the bond market for the second time in less than four months as the third-largest U.S. wireless carrier looks to finance expensive network upgrades and subsidize Apple's (AAPL) iPhones for its customers. 

The company further said that it may also use a part of the proceeds from the $2 billion notes offering to fund partner Clearwire's (CLWR) LTE plans, sending shares in the cash-strapped wireless company up more than 4% on the news Tuesday. The debt sale gives Sprint additional financing as it struggles to compete against larger rivals Verizon (VZ) and AT&T (T).

Recent price action in gold futures and ETFs suggests heightened volatility and further declines, making the risk prohibitively high now.

By Mar 1, 2012 2:05PM

Image: Gold (© Comstock Images/Jupiterimages)By Tom Aspray 

The strong surge in gold prices in the latter part of January suggested that the correction from the September 2011 highs was finally over. It is not uncommon for corrections in the gold market to last three to five months, as it normally takes that long for the extremes in bullish sentiment to change.

Bearish sentiment appeared to have bottomed last December, but the sharp drop on Wednesday, apparently in reaction to Ben Bernanke's comments on further easing, suggests traders had quickly become too optimistic.


Cloud computing is still part of the game.

By Stock Traders Daily Mar 1, 2012 1:55PM

Image: Clouds in a blue sky (© Purestock/Getty Images)One of the hottest sectors in the stock market so far this year has been technology. And investors have been particularly interested in "cloud computing." 

Cloud computing is simply the process of providing software programs, data, and storage space remotely, through servers that are not operated by the customer. 


Overall US sales are expected to rise 10% for the month from a year earlier.

By Kim Peterson Mar 1, 2012 1:17PM
Image: Couple shopping for car (© Image100/Jupiterimages)Updated 5 p.m. ET

Can anything stop Chrysler? The auto industry is in the midst of a remarkable revival, but Chrysler especially is putting up huge numbers.

The automaker reported another spectacular month of sales for February, with U.S. sales soaring 40% -- higher than the 32% growth analysts expected. It was the best February sales in four years. Not bad for a company that filed for bankruptcy in 2009.

All of the major automakers reported their February sales Thursday.  
Tags: FgmHMCTM

As PIMCO launches an exchage-traded fund version of its Total Return Fund, some mutual fund firms are left wondering whether they should jump on the bandwagon.

By The Fiscal Times Mar 1, 2012 1:02PM
ETFBy Suzanne McGeeThe Fiscal Times

"…Send not to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee."

All right, so 17th-century English poet John Donne didn't have the gargantuan U.S. mutual fund industry in mind when he penned those words. But that doesn't mean that at least some mutual fund managers and their bosses won't be watching uneasily Friday as the exchange-traded fund (ETF) version of the Pimco Total Return Fund (PTTAX) makes its debut.

Reports of the apparel retailer's demise are exaggerated.

By Jonathan Berr Mar 1, 2012 12:25PM

Gap (GPS), the apparel retailer that pundits had dismissed as a has-been, still has a few tricks up its sleeve.

The parent of Old Navy and Banana Republic last week reported better-than-expected fourth-quarter results. On Thursday, the company said that February sales also topped analysts' forecasts and underscored the strength of the economic recovery.


Liz Claiborne is initiated with an 'outperform,' and TripAdvisor is downgraded to 'neutral.'

By MSN Money Partner Mar 1, 2012 11:52AM
Information provided by

Thursday's noteworthy upgrades include: 
  • InterActiveCorp (IACI) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at BofA/Merrill
  • Denbury Resources (DNR) upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Sterne Agee
  • LINN Energy (LINE) upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Credit Suisse

These stocks are a selection from among S&P's top buy-rated issues for capital appreciation potential.

By TheStockAdvisors Mar 1, 2012 11:16AM

Nicholas Monu/iStock Exclusive/Getty ImagesBy Standard & Poor's The Outlook

The Top Ten Portfolio comprises stocks that S&P Capital IQ believes to be well positioned for solid capital appreciation over the next 12 months.

The goal of the Top Ten Portfolio is to outperform the S&P 500 index on a capital appreciation basis. Stocks must have our highest five-STARS ranking to enter the portfolio. This dynamic, actively managed portfolio has outperformed the S&P 500 since inception.


Attempts to pin the metal's Wednesday collapse on Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke are far-fetched.

By Jim Cramer Mar 1, 2012 11:04AM

thestreet logoImage: Gold Bars (© Stockbyte/SuperStock)Some days, it's so difficult to fathom this market that you get led astray in wicked fashion. Wednesday was one of those days.


The two most salient features of the day's action were the amazing decline in gold and the incredibly swift collapse in the euro. The latter occurred in the CurrencyShares Euro Trust ETF (FXE) from what had looked to be a stable level at around $133 to $134.


Both declines immediately brought out the "alibi-ers" -- the people who claim to know the answer for the decline.


Apple, Google and Baidu still have upside potential right now.

By InvestorPlace Mar 1, 2012 10:41AM
By Ivan Martchev

On Feb. 28, the Nasdaq-100 Index Trust (QQQ), tracking the NDX, closed on the high tick of the day at $64.70. The level itself does not say much until you consider that the last time "the cubes" traded at such a price was February 2001. The 11-year highs prompted a message in my email box from a financial editor regarding my take on the on the issue du jour: Are technology stocks overbought?

My short answer: Not the right ones.


The fad of making your own soda has fizzled.

By Jonathan Berr Feb 29, 2012 6:33PM
SodaStream International (SODA) learned Wednesday that what the market giveth, it can taketh away.

Shares of the soda machine maker plunged more than 13% after the company reported that unit sales growth had slowed to 8% from 60% in the third quarter. Investors were floored by the news. 

The drop in gold stocks Wednesday is a perfect opportunity to look at this mining play.

By Jim J. Jubak Feb 29, 2012 4:36PM
Image: Small Stack of gold ingots (© Anthony Bradshaw/Photographer)I'd use Wednesday's drop in gold and gold-mining stocks on strength in the dollar to buy Yamana Gold (AUY), which was trading down more than 4% in the afternoon.

I think the strength in the dollar is temporary, due first to Wednesday morning's announcement by the European Central Bank that European banks had borrowed 530 billion euros under the central bank's new three-year loan facility. That means the central bank has added 1 trillion euros to its balance sheet since December, and has a balance sheet that now stands at a record 2.74 trillion. The currency markets, rightly, feel that this expansion is inflationary down the road.

The company is emphasizing business hardware and software instead of the personal computers it built its name on.

By Kim Peterson Feb 29, 2012 4:07PM
Image: Man sitting at dining table with financial advisor (© Corbis)The personal-computing space doesn't get any love these days. First Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) said it's thinking about getting out of the business -- only to change its mind later.

Now Dell has had it. The company "is not really a PC company," founder Michael Dell said at an event in San Francisco Monday. "It's an end-to-end IT company that really understands the needs of its customers."

That's an interesting turnaround for the world's No. 3 personal computer maker. 

The activist investor cashes out at the right time as the markets have bid up the stock.

By Trefis Feb 29, 2012 2:39PM
Carl Icahn's long-standing association with Motorola seems to be drawing to an end after Motorola Solutions (MSI) announced Monday that it has agreed to repurchase almost $1.2 billion worth of stock from the activist investor.

The deal was inked pursuant to the company's $3 billion stock-buyback plan approved in January. Following the settlement of the transaction, Vincent Intrieri, Icahn's representative on Motorola Solutions' board, will resign from his position. 


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[BRIEFING.COM] The stock market is fighting an uphill battle right now given that it lacks any real leadership.

The consumer discretionary sector (-0.3%), which was a winning standout earlier, is now on the defensive and has recently slid to its worst levels of the day following a report that Home Depot (HD 90.35, -2.68) may have experienced a customer data breach at its stores.

Home Depot has joined with Chevron (CVX 127.17, -2.28), Boeing (BA 124.75, -2.05), ... More


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