A stock market graph trending down © jmiks/Getty Images
Be wary of dire market forecasts

The most likely scenario is that the markets will begin to rise from here -- and that bounce is just beginning to take hold.

VIDEO ON MSN MONEY

These tech headliners are in the midst of broader breakdowns. Consider cutting them from your portfolio.

By InvestorPlace 23 minutes ago

Caption: An office building occupied by Amazon.com in Sunnyvale, Calif.
Credit: © Kristoffer Tripplaar/AlamyBy Anthony Mirhaydari


For the first time since 2012, investors are contending with some serious market volatility. The vicious whipsaws were on display Tuesday as stocks launched higher after the both the Russell 2000 and the Nasdaq Composite Index ($COMPX) threatened to fall below their 200-day moving averages for the first time in three years.


The selling has been led by a breakdown in momentum stocks that hedge funds and retail investors alike piled into. Many are already down more than 20 percent from their highs.


And while that has been a drag on parts of the market -- especially the tech- and biotech-sensitive Nasdaq (which was down 7 percent from recent highs) -- we haven't seen the damage hit the overall market really hard just yet: The S&P 500, for instance, is only down 1.6 percent from its all-time high. The credit markets are also holding up, with corporate bonds resilient.

 

In tech, several of these tropes are making the rounds. But just because they're not true doesn't mean they're not profitable.

By Jim Cramer 51 minutes ago

Sandisk © Simon Dawson/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Sometimes the case in the tech world gets made even when it shouldn't be, and everyone eventually accedes to it.


For example, even without any real evidence that the personal computer business isn't falling off a cliff, the consensus has developed that it has gotten better. This view says you need to buy Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) and Intel (INTC) -- which, these analysts also claim, have lots of storage kickers away from personal computers to bring out value.


That's just perceived wisdom, but it has been one of the strongest calls out there.


TheStreet.com logoOr how about Seagate (STX) and Western Digital (WDC)? The consensus, as represented by short sellers (investors betting against these shares) -- and not unlike the view on HP -- has been that disk drives are going away courtesy of the personal computer's secular decline, and aided by increased production.

 

The company is attempting to block lawsuits with a new policy that lawyers are already questioning.

By MSN Money Partner 1 hour ago
General Mills brand cereal Cheerios are displayed on a supermarket
© Stephen Hilger/Bloomberg via Getty ImagesBy Michelle Coffey, MarketWatch

If you like Cheerios, you may want to keep it to yourself.


General Mills (GIS), maker of Lucky Charms and the Betty Crocker and Pillsbury brands, has installed a new privacy policy in which consumers who engage with its brands online, including liking them on Facebook or downloading coupons, withdraw their legal right to sue the company.


The Fortune 500 powerhouse notes a change in legal terms, warning on its website:

"We've updated our Privacy Policy. Please note we also have new Legal Terms which require all disputes related to the purchase or use of any General Mills product or service to be resolved through binding arbitration."

 
Tags: GIS

The chain blanketed the country with its giant locations. Now it makes more sense to focus on e-commerce.

By MSN Money Partner 1 hour ago
A customer pushes a cart through a Home Depot Inc. store in Washington, D.C. on Nov. 12, 2012 (© Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images)By Shelly Banjo, The Wall Street Journal

Home Depot's (HD) newest location is 10 times bigger than its average store, stocks three times more items and has no customers.

It's an online distribution center, for a company that seems the unlikeliest of Internet retailers.


For decades, Home Depot excelled at the traditional retail model of growing by adding new locations. But the seller of tools, saws, particleboard and washing machines is making a hard turn toward the Internet in the face of changing shopper habits and fast diminishing returns from new store openings.

 

In-store health services and wider array of products add to the outsized profits that flow from retail pharmaceuticals.

By Traders Reserve 2 hours ago
A woman carries a bag as she leaves a CVS store in Houston, Texas, U.S., on Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2009. A Texas pension fund will decide this week whether to award CVS Caremark Corp. a new pharmacy-benefits contract valued at almost $1 billion after the state's attorney general sued the company for alleged Medicaid fraud. Photographer: Aaron M. Sprecher/Bloomberg via Getty ImagesBy Karen Riccio

 

With some 45,000 drugstores in the U.S. with combined annual revenues of $245 billion chasing the U.S. consumer, there’s no shortage of competition.


It’s an industry forever in growth mode, with global pharmacy sales expected to reach $1.4 trillion by 2017.


U.S. chains' profits are flowing not only from growing pharmaceuticals demand but from cosmetics and hair products segments, seasonal merchandise and a growing array of food products. Even more importantly,  the big chains are aggressively expanding lucrative services such as vaccinations, in-store primary health care and mail-order drug sales. 

 

China's version of Twitter had to cut its offering size and raised a less-than-expected $286 million.

By MSN Money Partner 2 hours ago
Credit: Richard Drew/AP
Caption: Weibo Corporation celebrates it's IPO on Thursday at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New YorkBy Paul Mozur, Telis Demos and Matt Jarzemsky, The Wall Street Journal

Weibo Corp. (WB), China's version of Twitter (TWTR), raised $286 million in an initial public offering in New York, falling short of expectations because of a reduced offering size, in a big test of demand for Chinese Internet stocks ahead of a hotly anticipated Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. listing.


Weibo -- which means "microblog" in Chinese -- allows users to send brief public messages to followers who can comment on or repost them. Since its 2009 launch, Weibo had grown to 144 million monthly active users as of March, making it the closest thing China has to a public forum in a country where the media is strictly controlled by the government.


At the IPO price, Weibo, which is growing fast but posted a net loss last year, is valued at about $3.4 billion. The $17-a-share price, which was at the bottom of the projected range of $17 to $19. The company sold 16.8 million shares, fewer than the 20 million expected. The stock was trading at $18.84 Thursday in midday trading.

 

As the unprofitable video game maker struggles to retain favor among gamers, investors and the tech community itself, it's shifting its focus to a much smaller target: mobile.

By TheStreet.com Staff 3 hours ago

The Zynga logo is displayed on the front of the company's former headquarters in San Francisco © Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty ImagesBy Chris Ciaccia, TheStreet


As Zynga (ZNGA) struggles to stay relevant amongst gamers, Wall Street and the tech community itself, it is turning its eyes back from whence it came: the farm.


Zynga announced Thursday morning "FarmVille 2: Country Escape," a new mobile game that will allow players to connect both on- and offline to play the new game, any way they want, anytime they want.


TheStreet.com logo"FarmVille pioneered social gaming on the Web, and with 'FarmVille 2: Country Escape' we've reimagined the franchise as a mobile experience to match how players want to connect with their farm and with their friends," said Jonathan Knight, vice president of games, at Zynga in the press release.

 

Henrique de Castro got a whopper of a severance package after 15 months on the job. He can thank Alibaba.

By MSN Money Partner 3 hours ago
Credit: © Jan Haas/dpa/Corbis

Caption: Former Yahoo exec Henrique de CastroBy Joshua Brustein, Businessweek

Financial filings from Yahoo (YHOO) on Wednesday gave a final look into the short, lucrative stint that Henrique de Castro (pictured) spent as the company's chief operating officer. 


After 15 months on the job, De Castro was ousted in January and given a $58 million severance package. Beyond the payout, two things stand out about Yahoo's experience with its erstwhile executive: Yahoo really didn’t like him, and he should be really thankful for Alibaba.


Yahoo's dissatisfaction with de Castro can be seen in how it paid him in the year before it let him go. The company breaks down its cash compensation for top executives into two buckets: salary and bonus. 


De Castro made $600,000 in salary last year, with a bonus target of $540,000. Given the company’s anemic performance, no one got a full amount bonus. 

 
Tags: YHOO

When a stock is a favorite of many of the most successful investors around, you know it's special.

By StreetAuthority 6 hours ago
File photo of an AT&T Wireless store in Philadelphia, Penn. (© Matt Rourke/AP)By Eric Winter

They say there is power in numbers, and when it comes to investing like the pros, that sentiment is right on the money.

One of my favorite analytical methods is to find stocks that possess as many professional "endorsements" as possible. These stocks not only have impressively high yields, but they are also well-represented in the portfolios of the world's investing elite.

The beauty of today's hedge-fund regulations mean that managers are required to disclose their long positions every quarter, allowing investors of all sizes access to detailed insight into what a manager is holding. 

The Chinese e-commerce website's transaction volume dwarfs that of eBay and Amazon.com, but the company's size could be its worst enemy.

By MSN Money producer 8 hours ago

By Juro Osawa, Paul Mozur and Rolfe Winkler, The Wall Street Journal The Wall Street Journal

Alibaba Headquarters in Hangzhou, China © ChinaFotoPress/ChinaFotoPress via Getty Images

Jack Ma still has the spartan apartment in the Chinese city of Hangzhou where the former English teacher started Alibaba.com in 1999. As the e-commerce company grew, executives and employees often hunkered down there for inspiration while trying to come up with the next big thing.


Big doesn't come close to describing Alibaba Group Holding now.


Taobao, a website dreamed up in Ma's apartment a decade ago, has about 800 million product listings from seven million sellers who pay Alibaba for advertising and other services. In 2013, the combined transaction volume of Taobao and another Alibaba-run shopping site called Tmall reached $240 billion, says a person with knowledge of the figure.


The total is more than double the size of Amazon.com (AMZN), triple the size of eBay (EBAY) and one-third larger than the value of all the transactions last year at the two U.S.-based e-commerce giants combined.


Those numbers help explain why Alibaba is nearing another giant milestone: a hotly anticipated initial public offering in the U.S. that could raise about $15 billion from investors, just shy of what Facebook (FB) sold when the social-networking firm went public in 2012.

 

The company is scrambling to protect its equities arm, which could face declining volume and revenue as competitors close the gap.

By MSN Money Partner 22 hours ago
Goldman Sachs Group Inc. signage is displayed on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (© Jin Lee/Bloomberg via Getty Images)By Justin Baer and Scott Patterson, The Wall Street Journal

Under pressure from unhappy clients and losing market share to rivals, Goldman Sachs (GS) is trying to jump-start its stock-trading business.


At recent trading conferences with top clients, including Fidelity Investments and BlackRock Inc. (BLK), and in private conversations, investors have vented their concerns with the way Goldman and other firms trade stocks, people familiar with the matter said.


Amid the mounting frustration, Goldman has sought to take a more public role in the debate over the market's future. The firm has encouraged employees to stress to clients its views on market mechanics, and in March the firm's president wrote an opinion piece about those ideas in The Wall Street Journal. Goldman's effort also has included discussions over the future of its Sigma X private stock-trading venue. The Journal reported April 8 that Goldman was considering shutting it down.

 
Tags: BLKGS

The 8,000th model has rolled off the assembly line. There's a reason it's the best-selling airplane of all time.

By MSN Money Partner 24 hours ago
Credit: © David Ryder/Reuters

Caption: A Boeing 737 jetliner at the Boeing assembly plant in Renton, Wash.By Justin Bachman, Businessweek

Boeing's (BA) 737 aircraft just marked an aviation first: The 8,000th model has rolled off the assembly line, a round-number milestone for the best-selling airplane of all time. 


Boeing will deliver the aircraft, a 737-900ER, on Wednesday to United Airlines (UAL), the buyer of the first 737 sold in the U.S.


For an idea of just how popular the 737 is among airlines -- several have built their entire business models around that one airplane -- consider that Boeing's archrival, Airbus, finished its 8,000th overall plane in August. The 737 program started in 1967, seven years before Airbus delivered its first airplane.

 
Tags: BALUVUAL

These issues can hold your nest egg together for the long haul without worries about a volatile market.

By Traders Reserve Wed 2:32 PM

Johnson & Johnson products (© John Raoux/AP Photo)By Karen Riccio

                                                            

The stock market volatility we've experienced thus far in 2014 has certainly served as a rude awakening for many investors who were lulled into a false sense of security after a year of smooth sailing.

 

Wednesday, the Standard & Poor's 500 Index ($INX) -- flat as a pancake since January -- is the only major index not in the red. Both the Nasdaq Composite Index ($COMPX) and Dow Jones industrials ($INDU) are in negative territory, sending weary investors on a roller-coaster ride they didn't expect.

 

One way to avoid the ups and downs is by owning stocks that aren't about short-term trends, or economic cycles, or what the new Fed chair said a week ago.

 

The stock rises 8% on unconfirmed reports of a deal with a large beverage company. Shares have been extremely volatile for years.

By InvestorPlace Wed 1:28 PM

Bottles of SodaStream flavors (© Frances Roberts/Alamy)By Dan Burrows


SodaStream (SODA) stock was jumping Wednesday after a media report said the company is looking to sell a large stake to a major beverage firm.


This is just the sort of boost SodaStream needed after a prolonged period of weakness. Prior to Wednesday's report, shares were off 16 percent year-to-date and 55 percent off the 52-week high hit last summer.


Investors should know that, based on the sketchiness of the media report, it's unclear how long the rally in the stock can last -- especially since much of the upside appears to be driven by a short squeeze.


An Israeli financial newspaper said SodaStream is in negotiations to sell a 10 percent to 16 percent stake at $54 a share -- a 33 percent premium to Tuesday's closing stock price, Bloomberg reported. That would value the stock at $1.1 billion versus its current market cap of $787 million.

 

The more likely scenario is that the markets will begin to rise from here -- and that bounce is just beginning to take hold.

By MSN Money Partner Wed 1:11 PM
Image: Crystal ball (© Brand X Pictures/JupiterimagesBy L.A. Little, MarketWatch

Market commentators love to make the big call: market crash. 


As soon as there is a sign of general market weakness, they come out of the woodwork with their crash calls. Perennial doom commentators like Marc Faber, Harry Dent and others were on the airwaves last week talking up the fear of the impending meltdown. 


If you go back through history, that's how you get famous. You repeat your bear calls each time the market wobbles, calling for a huge decline, and if it develops while your call is still fresh, then six months down the road you are a guru -- set up to live off your 15 minutes of fame for the rest of your life.

 

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[BRIEFING.COM] The major averages hover just below their highs with one hour remaining in the final session of the week.

Tomorrow, most global markets, including the U.S., will be closed for Good Friday, while Japan's Nikkei and China's Shanghai Composite will remain open. On Monday, the New York Stock Exchange will open at its regular time, while markets across Europe and Hong Kong's Hang Seng will remain closed for Easter Monday. Nasdaq +17.71 at 4103.94... NYSE Adv/Dec ... More


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