The chain still has quality management and strong retention rates.
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The recent pullback in gold is an opportunity to build a position in this stock.
China was supposed to restrain lending last year, but the numbers show huge loan blowouts.
The famous billionaire firmly believes in long-term holdings, diversification and dividends.
By Don Dion, TheStreet
During his multidecade career, Warren Buffett has captured the minds of followers through an interesting mix of wildly successful investments and down-home, folksy charm.
In the absence of self-penned autobiographies or memoirs, authors have spent countless hours attempting to uncover the characteristics that make the Omaha, Neb., native so successful in business.
An examination of Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) empire reveals three notable qualities that, when internalized, can help investors benefit in times of economic prosperity and protect them in the event that the markets turn south.
The company played around with 2 key measurements, making one fund look more stable than it really was.
An investigation and charges from the Securities and Exchange Commission show an altogether different side of Schwab's company. Schwab did some bad things with one mutual fund, its YieldPlus, and two executives were charged with fraud and other securities violations.
The lesson from YieldPlus is a good one for any investor. Here's how Schwab went from "on our side" to misleading clients:
Four catalysts should keep the apparel retailer growing strong for years.
Mr. Market has been gaga over LULU for months, but many feel this yoga monster has overshot its true value. I disagree, and feel it's worth paying the premium for one of the next great worldwide brands.
Rex Moore, Motley Fool Top Stocks editor
This is a big day for my multivitamin portfolio, as I've finally settled on our first smaller company. I'll tell you more about why the other candidates didn't make the cut in my next article, but today I want to focus on the winner: Lululemon Athletica (LULU).
50 Cent uses Twitter to promote his stock ideas. Bill Gross opines about mindless mantises. The Kardashians are coming to Sears.
By TheStreet Staff, TheStreet
Here is this week's roundup of the dumbest actions in business.
5. Goldman's recommitment ceremony
Goldman Sachs (GS) dumped a 60-something page report on the public Tuesday after an extensive internal review by ts "business standards committee." The committee is made up mainly of Goldman Sachs executives, plus one or two people intended to add outside perspective, such as Wal-Mart (WMT) chairman Lee Scott.
The report was filled with cheap language like "The firm's culture has been the cornerstone of our performance for decades" and "The Committee believes all financial institutions, including Goldman Sachs, bear responsibility for constantly improving practices and procedures relating to the marketing and distribution of structured products."
Here's a look at three stocks Soros and his team are bullish on to start 2011.
By Jonas Elmerraji, Stockpickr
With 2011 well under way, investors are wondering what surprises the markets will hold this year. And the predictions are coming out of the woodwork.
But while opinions fly, what stocks should you really be looking at this year? Let's ask a billionaire.
George Soros made his mark on the financial world in the early 1970s when he and partner Jim Rogers founded the Quantum Fund, a hedge fund with an international bent. Today, the fund, which started with $12 million, has estimated assets under management of $27 billion.
Scott Rothbort has identified three 2010 stocks that offer compelling arguments for potential comebacks in 2011.
By Scott Rothbort, Stockpickr
Every year, investors and the media seem to focus on those stock darlings of the year just passed. In 2010, we had Apple (AAPL), Netflix (NFLX), Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) and Salesforce.com (CRM), to name a few.
But what can we learn from looking at the past year's dogs? Sure, some of them sold off and are left to wither away and die. Others suffer from a financial version of the Cinderella complex. But certainly some offer compelling arguments for potential comebacks.
I've identified three such stocks poised for comebacks in 2011. These are not sure things, but they certainly are so disliked that they may provide some opportunities.
Here are the top 3 reasons pump prices will keep rising.
Crude oil prices are rising steadily, up about 22% since a May "low" of around $77 a barrel, and gasoline prices have jumped in lockstep. There are a lot of reasons behind an increase in crude oil prices per barrel, as well as gas costs at the pump, but one thing appears certain: The $2 gas we saw at the beginning of 2009 is a distant memory, and the $3 gas of today is here to stay.
As much as it will pain commuters to hear it, it's very likely the days of $4 and even $5 gasoline lie ahead. A look at expert forecasts and recent news about crude oil prices indicate the recent run-up is not a short-lived phenomenon.
Here are three reasons to expect expensive gas for the rest of 2011:
The nation's efforts to curb economic growth might seem ill-timed, but ultimately they'll help the US market.
The Chinese tighten rates at the most inappropriate times!
Just when we had the dollar on the run, the euro looking good, the Japanese buying Portuguese bonds, the European bourses on solid footing, and a strike at a gigantic Chilean copper mine, they pick now to tighten? They give us a 50-basis-point reserve requirement boost?
When I look at the litany of what there is to worry about, this euro issue has dropped in the standings of major woes, behind $4 gasoline and a hard landing of the Chinese economy.
One report says the company might omit the 'home' button on future versions of the iPhone and iPad.
Apple (AAPL) may eliminate the home button from future versions of the iPad and iPhone, according to one report.
Apple employees are already testing button-free devices at its California headquarters, unnamed sources tell the Boy Genius Report website. If the tests are successful, then new models of the iPad and iPhone due this year may not have the button.
The report is getting some attention this week because, if true, it shows how Apple is trying to maintain its design edge over the competition. Rivals like Samsung and Research in Motion (RIMM) have developed or are working on tablets, and want to eat into the iPad's sizable lead.
The hard drive maker can easily clear the market's low hurdle.
Western Digital and I have a lot in common: People just don't expect much from us. Unlike me, however, WD has a strong chance to exceed its low expectations. Jim Mueller explains how you can profit from this.
Rex Moore, Motley Fool Top Stocks editor
There are two large competitors in the hard disk drive market, sharing about 60% of the market in both revenue and shipments: Seagate Technology (STX) and Western Digital (WDC). Hitachi's (HIT) Global Storage Technologies, Toshiba/Fujitsu, and Samsung Electronics are the other significant players.
I think one is worth your investment dollars.
Though the eurozone debt auctions this week went off without a hitch, a steady increase in borrowing rates for the likes of Portugal and Ireland sets the stage for more problems.
Investors have been pleased in recent days buy successful auctions of eurozone debt, which has been enabled by intense support from the European Central Bank, China and Japan. Portugal, which is seen as the most likely to follow Greece and Ireland into Europe's bailout club, sold $1.7 billion worth of bonds Wednesday, while Spain, Italy and Hungary all issued bonds today.
While demand for the bonds was good, the interest rates being paid continue to move higher. Portugal's four-year notes were priced to yield 5.4% vs. 4% previously. Now Portugal's 10-year yield stands at 6.8%, Ireland's at 8.3% and Greece's at 11.2%. Compare this with Germany's 3% yield.
With borrowing costs still rising and Europe's politicians unable to draw a line under the problem, it becomes harder and harder for the likes of Portugal to pay its creditors even if it takes bailout money. Here's why.
Could shares jump from $350 to a grand? Yes, but the company's profit and revenue would have to explode.
Now The Wall Street Journal is discussing the possibility of Apple soaring to $1,000 a share. Impossible? Perhaps. What would it take for that to happen?
Brett Arends admits that Apple has made him "look like a total idiot." He dared to question whether Apple's stock could keep up its amazing momentum. And since then, the growth rate of the stock has ratcheted up to an annualized 67%.
As the market climbs, we're seeing how powerful the former House speaker was.
I also believe that what might be going on right now is the reversion of something that really hurt stocks since the election: the Nancy Pelosi discount.
The election's results are complicated. We have the same president, of course, but the team has changed. The ideologues are out, and Bill Daley is in.
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With the universe of this category in its seasonal sweet spot, these picks have tailwinds propelling them into the new year.
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