The Federal Reserve and Congressional politics threaten to rain on the market party.
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We've seen a 20% rally since October, but whether this can continue depends on the earnings outlook for 2012 -- and that outlook is far from clear.
After a remarkable start to the year, with the U.S. stock market racing higher almost daily, the Standard & Poor's 500-stock index and Dow Jones Industrial Average both ended Friday with their worst weeks of the year, with the S&P 500 posting its first weekly loss.
A deal with TerraCyle may help solve it.
The company is in talks with TerraCycle about developing a program that would enable consumers to redeem used K-Cups for 2 cents each to raise money for nonprofits.
The longer the nation's situation drags on, the less likely it will hurt us. But if it does default, we could have a buying opportunity.
Is Greece a prelude to nothing? What people have failed to realize the whole time this Greek issue has been rumbling -- which, by the way, is now a couple of years -- is that the longer it goes, the less likely it will hurt Europe and even less likelier that it will hurt us.
Here's the deal. The big issue in 2008, the always-apt comparison, was the element of surprise. I think the idea that there is even the most remote element of surprise to a collapse of Greece is off the table and people who don't fret that it will collapse are those who are either brain dead or speculators (in other words, guys who deserve it.)
Investors have rewarded the stock after a first-quarter earnings report that blew away just about everyone.
Apple (AAPL) shares surpassed $500 for the first time Monday to close at $502.60, and analysts said $600 is an easy target as the company continues to excite investors with new products and more acceptance in the workplace.
The stock has been on the march since Apple reported a jaw-dropping first quarter, blowing away expectations with $13.1 billion in profit and sales of $46.3 billion. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX) was suffering from a 4.2% drop in earnings for the last quarter of 2011, but Apple singlehandedly turned that decline into a 4.4% gain, Bloomberg reports.
Steel Dynamics and US Steel are downgraded to 'hold.' DuPont is initiated with 'equal weight.'
Monday's noteworthy upgrades include:
- NVIDIA (NVDA) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at FBR Capital
- Varian Medical (VAR) upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at RW Baird
- Oceaneering (OII) upgraded to Conviction Buy from Buy at Goldman
- Noble Corporation (NE) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Goldman
- Ensco (ESV) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Goldman
With the new terms, Zynga will be able to maintain an edge over other social game developers.
Facebook filed an amendment to its S-1 filing on February 8, which further details its business relationship with Zynga. It outlines some of the most important agreements between Facebook and Zynga, including minimum user growth commitments that Facebook promised to Zynga.
Recent news puts a glow on a few related stocks.
By Aaron Levitt
Since Japan's earthquake and tsunami and the resulting Fukushima reactor disaster, the nuclear energy industry certainly has taken it on the chin. The meltdown at the nuclear plant has become synonymous with renewed anxiety about the safety and ethics of atomic energy. To that end, a variety of nations, such as Germany and Switzerland, have begun plans to wind down their nuclear operations and stall new reactor projects.
Some analysts and market pundits have called these reactions the end of the "nuclear renaissance." However, they might want to rethink their positions. A recent landmark decision could usher in a resurgence of nuclear energy growth here in the United States.
A pure play on the Bakken, this driller is one energy specialist's top takeover target.
Oasis Petroleum (OAS), rated a Best Buy in my growth portfolio, is also my top takeover pick for 2012.
Oasis Petroleum offers pure-play exposure to the Bakken Shale and boasts more than 300,000 net acres that are prospective for Bakken Shale and the Three Forks trend. Management estimates that the company has 1,303 potential drilling locations in the Bakken Shale alone.
This blue chip utility offers growth, yield and downside protection.
Although there are some encouraging economic signs out there, prudent investors need to stay defensive and blue-chip, dividend-paying stocks should continue to form the core of your portfolio.
One of the areas on which to focus is U.S. utilities which offer relative price stability and an attractive dividend yield. And one stock in particular that I like is Southern Company (SO) which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year.
After a forgettable fourth quarter, the bank expects to miss its profit goal.
British bank Barclays (BCS) looks like it will miss its profit goal after suffering its worst quarter in three years.
The eurozone debt crisis led to a slump in bond trading, which in turn dragged down Barclays' annual profit. This led CEO Bob Diamond to push back the return-on-equity target of 13% that he set less than a year ago.
Many analysts had thought that target was too ambitious.
Recent deterioration in the short-term technical outlook means now more than ever, investors must take decisive action to lock in recent gains.
By Tom Aspray, MoneyShow.com
The markets were clearly disappointed early Friday as more cracks developed in Greece's debt deal. Still, most of the major averages managed to close higher on Thursday. Over the past week or so, the correction camp (those looking for a pullback to buy) has become quite crowded.
This is likely the reason why the market has been grinding higher as late buyers abandon their disciplined strategy and just buy. Many of the market-leading sectors like housing have continued to move higher and have become even more overextended.
Some days CEOs would be better off staying in bed.
Last month, I introduced a new weekly series, the "CEO Gaffe of the Week." Having come across more than a handful of questionable executive decisions last year when compiling my list of the Worst CEOs of 2011, I thought it could be a learning experience for all of us if I pointed out apparent gaffes as they occur. Trusting your investments begins with trusting the leadership at the top -- and with leaders like these on your side, sometimes you don't need enemies!
This week I want to highlight the now former CEO of Diamond Foods (DMND): Michael Mendes.
The tech giant's ability to sell the iPhone at such a heavy premium speaks volumes about the popularity of the device.
This follows a report released by Asymco last week that estimates Apple's revenue and profit shares at 75% and 40%, respectively. These estimates underscore the tech company's dominance of an industry in which it commands only a small percentage of the actual market.
The country is faced with a deeply unpopular austerity plan. Will it walk?
The appliance maker was a disaster last year, but suddenly investors are seeing a lot to like.
This was a stinker of a stock in 2011, plunging nearly 50% as investors wanted nothing to do with appliances or the housing market. But it's a whole new story in 2012 as shares have soared 44% to $70 in weeks.
Why is everyone fired up about Whirlpool? And could this rally possibly last?
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Shares fell 9 percent during the quarter, which offers a compelling entry price now.
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[BRIEFING.COM] Equity indices are little changed at midday with the S&P 500 hovering within a point of its flat line. Small caps underperform with the Russell 2000 trading lower by 0.2%.
The first two sessions of the week produced the lightest volume totals of the year so it was not surprising to see the key indices respect narrow ranges through the first half of action today. After opening on a slightly higher note, the S&P 500 has remained within two points of its flat line. ... More
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