The $19 billion WhatsApp deal could become the Facebook founder's legacy . . . or his albatross.
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Investors who share Warren Buffett's economic optimism might consider this exchange-traded fund.
By Don Dion, TheStreet
Warren Buffett's biggest claim to fame over the span of his illustrious multi-decade career has been his unmatchable investing prowess. However, droves of individuals on Wall Street and Main Street also consistently turn to the Oracle of Omaha in order to gain insight into current events and to hear his outlook for the U.S. and global economy.
The chairman of Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) sat down with CNBC's Becky Quick in Sun Valley, Idaho to touch on topics ranging from the U.S. debt ceiling debates to the corporate jet industry. As in the past, the billionaire investor provided viewers with valuable insight blended with a touch of the folksy, down home charm he is known so well for.
During the conversation, Buffett had some choice words for Washington legislators when the topic of the U.S. debt ceiling was brought up. Calling the argument "silly," and likening the debate in Washington to a game of Russian roulette, he warned that major risks could arise in the event that the ceiling is not raised.
These market leaders have rallied sharply recently, and while a pullback is likely, the charts for both stocks show no signs of major tops.
Yes, there's a lot of hype around the iPad and iPhone stock -- but for good reason.
By Jeff Reeves, InvestorPlace.com
I typically have little interest in the hottest stocks on Wall Street. There is much to be said for being fearful when others are greedy.
After all, how much buying pressure can be left to bid up a stock after every guppy on Main Street and every shark in a thousand-dollar suit owns shares?
Recently, I took a good look at Apple Inc. (AAPL), one of Wall Street’s biggest darlings. I was trying to find reasons to avoid the stock like the plague. But as it turns out, Apple is actually very cheap – and a good buy despite all the hype. Here’s why:
Warren Buffett's top lieutenant writes a parody about the Great Recession.
That's the tale crafted in Slate Magazine by Charlie Munger, vice-chairman of Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A). Warren Buffett's right-hand man apparently has a knack for parody.
Here's how his tale unfolds:
In the country of Boneheadia there was a man, Wantmore, who earned his income as a home mortgage loan originator. Wantmore operated conservatively. All his home loans bore interest rates of 6 percent or less, and he demanded of all borrowers large down payments, documented proof of adequate income, and an immaculate credit-using history. Wantmore sold all his loans to life insurance companies that, before closing purchases, checked loan quality with rigor—then held all loans to maturity.
Peabody Energy wins the right to develop a major block of coal. Even better? The site is next door to China.
The anatomy of a great company.
By Morgan Housel
Asked about his favorite company outside of Berkshire, Munger literally interrupted the questioner and answered, "That's easy. It's Costco."
"It's one of the most admirable capitalistic institutions in the world. And its CEO, Jim Sinegal, is one of the most admirable retailers to ever live on this planet," he gushed. "I just can't say enough about my admiration for Costco. More of you should look at Costco. In fact, every time Donald Trump says something and you get discouraged, you should think about Costco."
One analyst questions the company's governance and wonders about the competition.
Paul Meeks at CapStone Investments has initiated coverage on the social-networking stock with a "sell" rating and a $45 price target.
"There is froth in the stock price of LinkedIn and other social media names," Meeks writes in his report. "We can't get here (over $90 per share) from there or from where we see LinkedIn going even under the most optimistic scenario." You can see the summary of Meeks' 18-page writeup here.
The major indexes saw a dip just as the ruling was being read. Coincidence?
That's what one website is wondering after seeing an interesting drop in the markets just after the verdict was read Tuesday.
The lead-up to the verdict began building at 2 p.m., with the televised proceedings starting at around 2:17 p.m., Mogulite reports. Between 2 p.m. and 2:34 p.m., there was a dip in the Dow Jones, S&P 500 and Nasdaq composite indexes.
MSN Money columnist Anthony Mirhaydari explains why the economic recovery is too young to die -- and how investors can still get in on it.
The economic recovery will continue, says Anthony Mirhaydari, a columnist for MSN Money.
Calling the recovery, "just too young to die," he notes many positives happening still. Corporate earnings are improving, and some short-term drags, such as high energy prices, are beginning to fade.
Mirhaydari also answers Facebook questions from MSN Money readers about stocks, the debt ceiling and investor mentality. You can check out his comments in the following video.
Post continues after video:
The video service, which is reportedly up for sale, announces some key numbers.
The online video service says it's getting paid subscribers faster than it had expected and is on track to hit 1 million by the end of summer.
In a blog post this week, chief executive Jason Kilar said Hulu Plus added more subscribers in June than in April and May combined. The site now has 875,000 members paying the $8 monthly subscription fee. That fee allows users to watch a vast library of television shows on their computers, iPads, phones and other devices. (The free version of Hulu is available only via computer and doesn't have as many videos.)
Finally, Kilar said, Hulu is profitable and on track to bring in nearly $500 million in revenue this year, up from $263 million last year.
After just 3 weeks on the market, Chromebooks grab 4 of the top 17 spots on Amazon's best-seller list.
By Anton Wahlman, TheStreet
Hey, Microsoft (MSFT), if you're in the car, check the rearview mirror and move into the right lane. It looks like there is a laptop freight train called Google (GOOG) that's about to pass you in sales. (Microsoft owns and publishes MSN Money.)
I just checked Amazon's laptop bestseller-list, and among the top 17 best-selling models, there are four Google laptops, including the No. 2 seller. No. 1 is Apple's (AAPL) 13-inch MacBook Pro. Four out of the top 17 isn't a bad showing for Google after being on the market for only three weeks.
These Google laptops are the so-called Chromebooks, based on the Chrome OS, and they cost between $350 and $500. I have written about these devices extensively since early December 2010, including this article in March.
The stock has historically outperformed the market, but technical indicators suggest that relationship may be changing.
- See related: Trading with Starc Bands
A new fund designed to track cloud computing turns heads by including the video-streaming service as a top holding.
By Roger Nusbaum, TheStreet
The launch of the First Trust ISE Cloud Computing Index Fund (SKYY) is the latest micro-niche fund to hit the market. Some investors will scoff at the fund, some will trade it actively, and some will find genuine investment merit.
The U.S. fund will have 40 holdings, most of which are technology related, will rebalance quarterly, and will charge a 0.60% expense ratio. At the industry level, the fund is dominated by software (32% of holdings), Internet services (22%) and communications equipment (16%). One other industry in there that might be a surprise is Internet and catalog retail at 7.75%, with the largest name from that segment being Netflix (NFLX).
Netflix's inclusion means the fund provides logical access not only to companies building and servicing the cloud but also to a couple of companies using the cloud. Netflix is the largest holding in the fund, at 4.5%, and it seems like everyone has an opinion about the name. Investors who are bullish on Netflix believe the company's growth is scalable because of how good the service is, while others argue the stock should fall by pointing to valuations and increasing costs for content.
Even for less-than-bullish analysts, the automaker's stock is indisputably cheap.
By Jake Lynch, TheStreet
BusinessWeek and Bloomberg on Tuesday reported about the company's channel stuffing, or flooding of dealers' inventory to goose profits. Betting on a strong rally in SAAR, or the seasonally adjusted annual rate, for cars, some dealers now have excess inventory, presenting risk to GM, which may have difficulty maintaining its sales and profit levels.
For investors, or potential investors, in GM, this isn't news. Bearish traders have been touting this practice for months as a reason to avoid the stock. Along with souring economic data, channel stuffing is a relevant counterargument to the bullish case. Nevertheless, savvy investors know to build positions amid negative news flow because once it dissipates, stocks tend to rise.
The Wall Street Journal says a September release is pretty certain for a thinner, lighter model with an upgraded camera.
By Jeff Reeves, InvestorPlace.com
It's official, iPhone fans. You will get your shot at a shiny new iPhone 5 by the end of September.
OK, well, it's not official official. Apple CEO Steve Jobs plays his cards notoriously close to his vest on product launches, and Apple hasn't formally set a date. But after a host of similar rumors swirling around tech blogs, the latest report of a September launch comes from a highly respected source, The Wall Street Journal.
To lend credibility, the Journal has based the date on supply chain interviews and managed to wrangle a few more details about the gadget out of its sources in the process.
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The push is on for undervalued, cash-rich technology companies to return more money to investors. And there's still room for dividend growth.
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[BRIEFING.COM] The S&P 500 (-0.1%) continues trading just below its flat line.
So far this week, participants have not received any market-moving data points, but tomorrow's retail sales report for February could potentially elicit a reaction from the market. The Briefing.com consensus expects the reading to indicate growth of 0.2% after last month's 0.4% decline.
Outside of retail sales, participants will also receive weekly initial claims (consensus 329K), export and import ... More
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